HARRISBURG, Pa. — To bring dairy producers and allied industry representatives together to find the winning combination for success at a personal and professional level, the Pennsylvania Dairy Summit is taking place on February 8-9, 2023 in State College, Pa.
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To bring dairy producers and allied industry representatives together to find the winning combination for success at a personal and professional level, the Pennsylvania Dairy Summit is taking place on February 8-9, 2023 in State College, Pa. With the theme of “Fusion,” attendees from Pennsylvania and beyond, including producers in all types of production, will find fusion across the dairy industry though collaboration, idea-sharing, networking and inspiration (file photo USDA)
With the theme of “Fusion,” attendees from Pennsylvania and beyond, including producers in all types of production, will find fusion across the dairy industry though collaboration, idea-sharing, networking and inspiration.

Thanks to grants and support from the Northeast Dairy Business Innovation Center, Center for Dairy Excellence, Professional Dairy Managers of PA, and Summit sponsors, Dairy Summit registration fees for dairy producers from any state are set to be as affordable as possible. Producers from any state can attend the full, two-day Dairy Summit for $100, with one-day rates available for $50.

“Networking is one of the reasons the Dairy Summit is always so impactful and gets us energized at the start of every year. It’s nice to catch up with friends and fellow dairy producers you haven’t seen in a while, all while exchanging ideas on real-time issues that affect all of us,” said Tony Brubaker, the 2023 Pennsylvania Dairy Summit chair and a dairy farmer from Lancaster County. “With that idea in mind, we have some interactive discussion groups and breakout sessions planned this year, so we can continue to have those open conversations with one another.”

Along with five dynamic keynote sessions and 12 in-depth breakout sessions, there are several discussion groups happening throughout the event. Led by moderators and industry representatives, attendees can share their personal experiences, ask tough questions, exchange ideas, and have candid conversations about the issues that matter. The following discussion groups are included in the Summit program:

  • What’s Next With Federal Dairy Pricing Policy – With a new Farm Bill and federal milk marketing order reform on the horizon, this discussion will focus on what’s being proposed and how the changes could affect dairy operations.
  • What Workforce Engagement Means for My Dairy – Given the current labor situation, having a workforce development plan in place is crucial. Join a discussion on how to find, hire, develop and keep a highly engaged and motivated dairy team.
  • What’s Checkoff Done for Me Lately— This discussion will focus on what happens to the 15 cents from every 100 pounds of milk dairy farmers produce that goes to support dairy promotion efforts locally and nationwide.

To discuss herd management, farm finances, diversification and more, several dairy producers from Pennsylvania and New York will also lead panel discussions during breakout sessions:

  • Adding to Revenue With Diversification  Diversifying the family farm can not only strengthen dairy operations, but it can lead to future revenue streams. During this panel discussion, John Dickinson, Daryl Martin, and Corey Mellot will share their unique journeys, roadblocks they have encountered along the way, and the opportunities they have found with diversification.
  • Evaluating ROI on New Tech Tools  Technology is continually evolving, but how do you know if the “latest and greatest” dairy tech tools are worth investing in? What’s the true return on investment? In this panel discussion, Greta Halahan, Ben Peckman, and Duane Stoltzfus will have an honest conversation about their firsthand experience with tools like activity monitors, precision farming technology, feed watchers and more.
  • Breeding for Enhanced Profitability  By remaining laser-focused on breeding and genetics, many dairy producers are not only improving their herd’s performance but also enhancing their overall profitability. During this panel discussion, Harrison Hartman, Clint Burkholder, and Byron Graybeal will share how they are infusing breeding and genetics into their herd management decisions.

In addition, the Summit’s keynote speakers plan to lead engaging sessions focused on farm succession and family dynamics, what dairy can learn from the avian influenza pandemic, diversifying the family farm, change management, and multi-generational family businesses.  Visit www.padairysummit.org to meet the speakers, view the full program and register online.

Dairy Summit registration fees for dairy producers from any state are set to be as affordable as possible. Producers can attend the full, two-day Dairy Summit for $100, with one-day rates available for $50. Other discounts are available for additional people who register from the same farm. Free transportation is also available for Pennsylvania dairy producers – for day runs only – from Belleville and Quarryville, Pennsylvania.

To register for the Dairy Summit or reserve free transportation, call the Summit Business at 814-355-2467 between the hours of 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. Email info@padairysummit.org with questions.

Wisconsin dairies were among National Mastitis Council’s “cream of the crop” for producing quality milk during its Feb. 2 National Dairy Quality Awards program.

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