Each summer University of Minnesota Extension holds a series of on-farm dairy field days that showcase some of the most successful dairy farms our state has to offer. These field days focus on a range of topics from barn designs to dry cow management. The field days are great opportunities for local producers and the general public to learn from University experts and most importantly from each other.
This year two dairy field days are being hosted in southeast Minnesota. Both field days are open to the public. Local dairy producers or those considering getting into the business are especially encouraged to join us for these events.
On August 4 the Nelsons of Altura, Minn., will be hosting a field day focused on organic dairy production and pasture management. The Nelsons milk 90-100 cows of mixed breeds in a step-up parlor. They emphasize A2A2 genetics and graze about 125 acres. The Nelsons have transitioned to the next generation with son and daughter-in-law now a part of the operation.
The Nelson field day will begin at 10 a.m. at the Utica School House, 200 S. Center Street (Hwy 33), Utica, Minn. After presentations and a lunch, participants will commute to the Nelson farm, 19675 County Road 33, Altura, Minn. 55910 for a farm tour. The program wraps up at 2:30 p.m.
On August 10 Trailside Holsteins of Fountain, Minn., will be hosting a field day focused on their use of technology in herd management. Trailside Holsteins recently installed the CowManager system to monitor activity and rumination. They believe the rumination sensor has been very beneficial in the management of their 550 cow herd. The Johnsons are also working on a plan to transition the business from Jon to Michael and Margaret.
The Trailside Holstein field day will be hosted in its entirety at Trailside’s milking farm, 24962 Jade Road, Fountain, Minn. 55935. The program will start at 12:30 p.m. and finish at 3 p.m. Snacks will be provided but there will not be a lunch at the event. Those interested in attending are encouraged but not required to register online at z.umn.edu/2uph.