Fall brings Southwest Dairy Day, elections and more

Fall brings Southwest Dairy Day, elections and more

Return to October 2022 newsletter

Fall brings Southwest Dairy Day, elections and more

By Darren Turley
Executive Director, Texas Association of Dairymen

October is here, and before the ghosts and goblins appear at the end of the month, we hope you’ll join us in Windthorst and Scotland for a look at three robotic dairies as part of Southwest Dairy Day.

The event is expected to be very well attended this year, as it will be a great opportunity for dairy farmers, allied industry representatives and the surrounding community to check out modern dairy technology.

You’ll find more details about the event elsewhere in this newsletter or here.

Robotic technology is an example of how research is helping the dairy industry evolve to help feed the world moving forward. A number of conversations are occurring around Texas on the need for specific research to help dairy farmers. For example, ongoing discussions about implementing digestors on dairy farms has led to some new ideas for research focusing on market access and on the remaining waste from the digestor possibly being used as fertilizer by other farms.

As always, any mention of research in the Texas dairy industry must include kudos to the Texas A&M AgriLife, whose ongoing projects to benefit both Texas dairy and agriculture are often featured in our newsletter.

While I’m looking forward to Southwest Dairy Day, I’m also studying the ballot for the upcoming General Election on Nov. 8. Early voting starts Oct. 24 and continues through Nov. 4. I encourage you to vote – these elections are crucial to rural Texas. Our governmental affairs team discusses the election and the statewide races in this newsletter or here.

Once the election determines who will represent Texans at the state Capitol, the Legislature will convene in January for what is expected to be a very active session with the record budget surplus ($27 billion as of now) and numerous ideas on how to spend that money. The Texas Association of Dairymen anticipates legislation will be filed again regarding the disposal of milk, and we will be considering other issues, as well.

What else can we expect in this last quarter of 2022? Unfortunately, the ongoing drought has Texas dairy farmers facing forage shortages. These conditions will cause higher feed prices well into next year.  Add the impact of continuing war between Russia and Ukraine on feed and fertilizer prices, and feed costs will definitely be higher next year, as well. Thankfully, Texas dairies continue to produce more milk, which helps pay for the extremely high forage and feed prices, but it is not enough to keep farms profitable during this prolonged drought.

The Texas Association of Dairymen continues to pray for rain as we protect and promote the Texas dairy industry.

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