Beginning dairy farmers as well as seasoned producers have a new resource available from the Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) and partner organizations including CIAS. Dairy Your Way is a free, 100-page book that profiles a variety of dairy housing and production systems suitable for the Upper Midwest.
Producers, university researchers, extension educators and industry experts from Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan contributed to the book. Each chapter profiles a different aspect of dairy production and includes profiles of farmers from all three states who are farming successfully in different ways.
Dairy Your Way describes the variety of management alternatives available to today’s dairy producers, including tie stall setups, free stall barns and transitional housing options. The book also discusses confinement, grazing and organic management systems as well as custom heifer-raising and value-added production. There is also a chapter dedicated to milking center design and retrofitting options. For farmers at the beginning or the end of their careers, one chapter is devoted to entry and exit strategies.
Print copies of Dairy Your Way are available free of charge from CIAS by calling 608-262-5200. An electronic version of the book is available on the CIAS web site; links are listed below. The publication was produced using funds from the North Central Region Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Program. It is published by the MDA with significant participation from the Minnesota Institute for Sustainable Agriculture at the University of Minnesota, the Sustainable Farming Association of Minnesota, the Center for Integrated Agricultural Systems at the University of Wisconsin, and the Michigan Agricultural Stewardship Association.
There are two other titles in the “Your Way” series. Poultry Your Way is available on the CIAS web site. Hogs Your Way is available for purchase from the University of Minnesota Extension Distribution Center at (800) 876-8636 or www.extension.umn.edu (type “Hogs Your Way” into the search box).
Links to Dairy Your Way on the CIAS web site: