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Dairy Training Center Opens in China

U.S. Grains Council teams with China Genetics to open a dairy management training center aimed at capitalizing on a growing market.

Dairy product consumption in China is on the rise and to meet that demand the country will have to improve dairy production and management. To that end, the U.S. Grains Council and China Genetics have teamed up to open a new U.S.-Sino Dairy Management Training Center, about two hours outside Beijing.

The program is housed at the Hua Xia Dairy Farm where USGC has been developing a comprehensive training program to enhance management skills in China's commercial dairy sector. The aim is to increase production and accelerate the demand for feed grains.

Chinese demand for dairy products including milk and cheese is expected to grow from about 15 million metric tons in 2004 to nearly 40 million tons by 2010, according to a report by Rabobank. USGC estimates that China's milk yields per cow average about 11,023 pounds per year on feed that's primarily low-quality crop residues. A corn silage-based diet could boost yields, the council reports.

In a press statement, USGC Chair Davis Anderson notes: "China's dairy sector is growing rapidly and adding an estimated 1.5 million tons of new corn demand each year. Feed grain demand can accelerate further if high-quality forages are utilized and herds enter into higher levels of productivity."

China Genetics, partner in the program, operates a 620-cow dairy with plans to expand to 2,000 cows by the end of 2007. They will also begin marketing a branded milk product in Beijing in July.

The new center will host short visits, on-farm practical training sessions and seminars and workshops. With USGC help, consultants will conduct training courses and provide on-farm consultations to partner dairy operations in the countryside.

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