From dairying around the world to safety around the farm, the 2013 PDPW Business Conference will bring timely and useful information to today's dairy producers and other industry professionals, March 12-13 at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison.
The conference theme "Recharge!" is fitting for this annual educational event, as it has become a place for dairy producers to reconnect with industry friends, rethink ways to handle on-farm tasks and business challenges, and plug in to industry issues that require dairy producer leadership.
"'Recharge' is our way of saying, 'Never tire of doing what is right – for the land, our animals, our employees and our customers,'" says Mark Diederichs, president of the PDPW board of directors. "When dairy producers come together for this conference each year, we draw strength from each other, build our professional networks, and recommit to PDPW's vision of leading the success of the dairy industry."
This year's keynote speaker line-up includes headliners that will broaden horizons beyond the farm gate.
•"Dairying Around the World" features an international panel of dairy producers who will talk about milk pricing, cost of production, feed availability and other factors affecting their bottom line. Panelists include Andrew MacFarlane, New Zealand; Jane Dyson, England; and Jaime Suarez, Mexico.
•In "No Place But Up!" Wisconsin veterinarian Lance Fox shares amazing photos and video of the fulfillment of his dream to climb Mount Everest.
•In "Generations, Start Your Engines!" Seth Mattison will offer practical insights that help people from different generations rev up productivity without causing sparks to fly.
•Former professional baseball player Jim Morris, inspiration for the Hollywood movie, "The Rookie," tells his real-life story in a way that can ignite passion for overcoming odds.
•Frank Miles died in a hang gliding accident and lived to tell about it, thanks to emergency room doctors who revived him. He provides the comic relief at Tuesday evening's dinner in his high-energy presentation, "Laugh at Fear."
•The entire conference is emceed by the knowledgeable and vivacious Dennis Frame, co-director of the University of Wisconsin Discovery Farms program.
Fourteen morning and afternoon specialty sessions take place on both March 12 and 13, offering broad coverage of topics of greatest concern to today's dairy farm operations.
•Recommit to Safety: Conducting Farm Safety Orientations and Meetings with High-Return Results will be led by executive coach Jorge Estrada, and will teach practical and highest return methods to raise the safety consciousness of farm employees.
•In Decision Making Processes for Your Feed Program, Dr. Brian Perkins will teach producers how to make profitable decisions about what goes into a ration.
•Increasing and Maintaining Profitability During Volatile Times will be moderated by Cornell University's Jason Karszes, helping dairies fine tune the numbers and increase margins. New York dairy producers John Dickinson and Don Jenson will join Karszes and provide insight into how their dairies remain financially fit.
•Make Mom Proud: Understand the Early Life Factors that Impact Long-term Productivity of Calves. Dr. Michael Van Amburgh will share the latest research about the powerful signals a dam sends to the calf through colostrum, and offer practical information that can lead to positive profitable results for dairy animals.
•Beyond Margin Management, A New Frontier Awaits will be presented by Scott Stewart, CEO of Stewart-Peterson Inc.
•The Engaged Employee – How to Increase Productivity Through Five Specific Behaviors will offer the executive coaching of Jorge Estrada combined with producer panelists Robert Hennen of Minnesota and Juan Quezada, director of safety, recruiting and training for Milk Source LLC in Kaukauna.
•Avoiding Heat-Stressed Cows with Cool Management will be taught by Dr. Jim Spain of the University of Missouri. From dietary management strategies to environmental cooling strategies, this session addresses the profit-robber on many dairies.
•Dairy Stocksmanship: Reconnecting People to Cows will be taught by industry-leading educator Dr. Don Hoglund. A new generation of dairy workers needs to learn animal behaviors that improve the interactions between people and cows. Many "I didn't know that" moments will come to light in this session, for experienced cow people and those who need to understand cow behavior better.
•Stepping Up Calf Immunity and Controlling Bovine Respiratory Disease will share new research that helps you manage vaccinations to optimize calf health, led by Dr. Amelia Woolums from the University of Georgia.
•New Technologies to Improve Cattle Reproduction will be led by Dr. Paul Fricke, who will offer an overview of research assessing the value of new technologies that promise to improve reproduction in dairy cattle.
•Dairy Globalization: What Lies Ahead? This session will shed light on demand, the all-important balance to the supply dairy producers create. Robert Chesler, head of FCStone LLC's Food Service Division will moderate a panel that includes Marc Beck, U.S. Dairy Export Council; Chris Herlache, Schreiber Foods; and Mark Piper, president and COO of Fonterra USA.
•No Residues Left Behind is an important update from Dr. Mike Apley on the residue challenges in cull dairy cows and high-risk behaviors on the farm that contribute to this major reputational challenge ahead for the dairy industry.
•The charismatic and forward-looking Dr. Lowell Catlett will lead Food for a Smart Planet, providing a look at the new world of agriculture ahead, where opportunities have never been greater to serve a smart consumer.
•For those who need an upbeat perspective on the U.S. economy and how agriculture can thrive in a borderless world, Dr. Lowell Catlett will explain how creativity, technology and wealth are driving new industries and business development like never before in his session, •How the World's biggest Economy Keeps Getting Bigger.Registration information for the 2013 PDPW Business Conference can be found at www.pdpw.org, or by calling PDPW at 800-947-7379.