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Our old farmhouse

I really like living on the farm in our very old farmhouse. We believe it was originally built in 1906. My husband, Duane, grew up here.

DMC, DRP offering a lifeline

Dairy Margin Coverage and Dairy Revenue Protection programs have blunted the pain of $15 Class III milk. Ever.Ag President Phil Plourd said these programs have had a major impact. “The bottom …

Better than store-bought

What makes a Christmas gift special? Is it special because you hoped for it? Is it special because it surprised you? Is it special because it reflects the giver’s love and thoughtfulness? Is it …

Midwest cheesemakers report steady production

The U.S. Department of Agriculture again lowered its milk production forecasts for 2023 and 2024 in the latest World Agriculture Supply and Demand Estimates report. The 2023 forecast was reduced due …

Christmas memories

Christmas has always been a big deal in our family, starting with the gifts.   Growing up, Mom would give me $3 for each member of the family to help buy Christmas gifts. It was a wonderful …

Checkoff reflects on 2023

As we prepare for a new year, staff have been reflecting on 2023, evaluating our work, and using what we’ve learned to increase dairy demand and consumer confidence in 2024. Checkoff worked …

Group cows to maximize profitability

Grouping cows on a dairy can have many benefits, including maximizing efficiencies, increasing income over feed costs and minimizing stress.   Grouping strategies generally fall into two …

Making Christmas memories

Christmastime when I was a kid consisted mostly of waiting and waiting for the moment when we could finally open our gifts. That and putting up with aunts and uncles and grandparents, many of whom …

Christmas games

Every year during the holiday season, the ghosts of Christmas past sneak into our consciousness as we recall special moments with family and friends. One of my favorite holiday memories is from the …

The weeks before Christmas

‘Twas the weeks before Christmas, when all ‘cross the farm There was many a reason to sound an alarm The creatures were indeed stirring, causing quite a tizzy The chaos that ensued has …

The family vacation

We are getting close to Christmas, and I have yet to get an answer from my kids about what we can get for them. They are all on their own, with their own homes, and they say they don’t need …

Supply/demand forecast updated

In the December U.S. Department of Agriculture’s supply/demand report, 2023 milk production was estimated at 226.9 billion pounds. That’s down 200 million pounds from the previous …

Decorating for Christmas

Many of us have already pulled out our family’s favorite Christmas recipes in anticipation of holiday baking. These recipes anchor family traditions through the generations and keep missing …

Cheese demand holding steady

Financial relief is coming slowly to U.S. dairy farms. The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced the November federal order Class III milk price at $17.15 per hundredweight, up just 31 cents from …

USMCA panel sides with Canada

The dispute panel established under the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement ruled against the U.S. in a disagreement with Canada on dairy market access. Two of the three panelists ruled in favor of …

Memories in color

Having a smartphone has allowed me to take hundreds of photos of our experience raising kids on the farm over the past decade. The only problem is, I never did anything with the photos. I would …

It is officially winter. A good marker of when it’s winter on a dairy farm is when you break out the heavy jacket for the first time and when you start putting on the calf jackets. While I was …

Tractor nostalgia

The pleasant autumn that we’ve had so far has caused me to recall the truism, “No nice weather goes unpunished.” This, in turn, made me think of the coming winter and the unpleasant …

End-of-year planning

Every December, it’s time to send the books off to our accountant and find out whether we need to make some investments in feed, facilities or equipment to avoid giving the government more …

Pursuing the presence of the season

Busy, busy, busy.   This seems to be the current theme on our dairy and in our lives as of late. Looking around, it also seems to be the current theme in our society. There is more to do, …

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