To enable organic dairy family farmers, situated across an extensive area, to have informed discussion about matters critical to the well being of the organic dairy industry as a whole.
NODPA NEWS & NOTES
Payprice Summary Chart: 2006 to 2013
Download a copy of our summary chart comparing payprice for Organic Valley and Horizon over time.Organic Milk, Pay, Retail and Feed Prices March 2016
Added March 28, 2016. Data published by the USDA AMS continues to show slight reduction in retail sales of organic non-fat fluid milk for November and December, 2015, and a small increase in sales of full fat and 2% fluid milk compared to 2014. The only Federal Milk Marketing Order to publish data on organic utilization is Order 1 (Northeast) and their data show that utilization of organic whole milk had increased by 20% to 13,659,363 lbs. in December, 2015 compared to 11,306,595 lbs. in December, 2014. Non-fat and Reduced Fat organic milk utilization only increased marginally by less than 1%. There is no tracking of the increasing sales of grass-fed milk, and now certified organic grass-fed milk, both retail and manufacturing. With Danone (Stonyfield brand) moving away from purchasing all of its supply from CROPP, it is expanding its direct purchasing of organic to include organic grass-fed, there is increasing competition for a limited pool of milk. Maple Hill Creamery, selling to Danone should assist with their balancing and allow them to continue their active solicitation of producers who can meet their standards. Producers are exercising their right to move their supply to other companies with the increase in competition across the Midwest and the Northeast. Those looking for an easier entry into a value added market are looking at the grass-fed market demand, whether it is an entry to organic or not. With the price of conventional milk projected to stay low because of the decrease in exports and without any grant based federal safety net, many small to mid-size dairy operations are looking at different options to stay in business. For more on pay and feed price, please go to:
Check Out All The Businesses Supporting NODPA's Work
Over 20 businesses have signed up for our business membership directory, helping support our newsletter, web site, advocacy work, and more. Check them out.
Added in June and July 2016.
For full classifieds, click here.
Want to submit your own farmer classified? Click here >
Certified Organic Straw Square Bales. 50-60 lbs each. Delivery available if order 250 or more. Willing to contract annually. $7
Added July 5, 2016.
Name: Gross Organics
Location: Blanchard, Iowa
For Sale: NOFA-NY Certified Organic Dry Hay and Baleage (2016). Taking orders now for out of the field. Also, Minneapolis Moline 4 Row Cultivator, NI Hay/Grain Elevator 41', Gehl Silage Blower, and Hesston BP25 Tub Grinder. Call Jeff @ Mitchell Farm 607-566-8477 or email Mitchellorganics@hotmail.com. (Avoca, NY - Steuben County). Added June 20, 2016.
We have Mosa Certified Organic Alfalfa Hay. The bales are 4ft X 5ft and weigh approx 400-600lbs. Cost: $40.00 a bale 4 bale minimum. Sorry no delivery.
Added June 18, 2016.
Name: Lynch Farms
Location: Grant, Michigan
CERTIFIED ORGANIC HAY and FORAGES
Added June 7, 2016. Are you planning for your 2016 hay needs? Order your 2nd/3rd cutting now… Marz Farm is offering the following products:
- Grass Small square bales: 1st cutting $4.00 per bale or $220 ton; 2nd/3rd cutting $5.00 bale or $275 ton
- Large square bales (3' x 3' x 7'): 1st cutting $72.50 bale or $220 ton; 2nd/3rd cutting $85 bale or $250 ton
- Bedding or mulch hay large: at $40 bale or small at $2.00 bale
- Balage bales: 1st cutting at $50 a bale
- Dry round bales: 1st cutting 4 x 4 at $25 a bale and 4 x 5 at $35 a bale
All square bale hay is stored in doors. Forage tests will be available. Quantity discounts. We ship throughout the country and have multiple delivery quantities available or pickup at the farm. Free samples.
Located in NY Southern Tier between Binghamton and Ithaca, Tioga County. Contact Tony Marzolino: 607-657-8534 farm, 315-378-5180 cell, or firstname.lastname@example.org
Two Certified Organic, 100 % grassfed Milking Shorthorn Heifers. Both ready to breed. Closed herd. Ideally we'd sell them together, $1,800 each or $3,000 for both.
Added July 6, 2016
Name: Jennifer Linck
Location: Craftsbury, Vt
WANTED: 3rd Generation Grass-fed Registered A2/A2 Guernseys or Brown Swiss or Dutch Belts - milking or heifers. Preferably weaned on mother's milk. Need 1-10. Call 845-901-7808 for more. Nimai.
Added June 26, 2016
Location: New Paltz, NY
16 Bred Holstein Heifers
Due end of Sept and Oct. Ultrasounded. Confirmed bred. Animals out of cow herd we sold are averaging 80 lbs of milk per day for the herd owner in New York. Bred to Bull out of cow that is classified EX for several generations. The dam made 27,000 lbs of milk as 2 year old. Dam milked 30,000 as a 3 year old.
Also available: Extremely high quality haylage and corn silage in trailer load lots. KD shavings available year round, live floor trailer loads.
Ralph Caldwell, 207-754-3871. Added June 16, 2016.
We are seeking a farm machinery operator/mechanic who has a few years of experience operating and working on equipment, has enough years of farming experience to appreciate the benefits and limitations of a farming schedule, understands and accepts that farming is not always a 9-5, Monday-Friday job, is willing to meet the varying seasonal demands of farming and has farmed long enough to know that he enjoys a farming lifestyle .
As far as farming skills, we are looking for an individual who is very comfortable plowing, harrowing, running a Brillion seeder, mowing, raking, tedding, baling, wrapping and chopping hay, running a flail chopper and high dump wagon. Must be very much at home operating a full size, commercial front end loader and driving a tandem dump truck. CDL A would be great.
As far as mechanic skills, he doesn't need to be a full blown, factory trained, certified mechanic with intimate knowledge of every Cat, Cummins, Perkins, Deutz, Detroit and Mack, but he can certainly split an older tractor and change the clutch in his sleep. He can do rear tractor tires and truck tires by himself. He can swap injection pumps, trouble shoot injectors, troubleshoot and replace brakes and airlines, replace a head gasket, trouble shoot and replace alternators and starters, disassemble and re-pack hydraulic cylinders, etc. Basic wrenching that any gear head kid learns growing up on a farm around equipment.............
If you enjoy outdoor farming tractor work, wrenching & "custom" fabricating, driving trucks, operating earth moving equipment, working in the woods logging or sugaring; and doing all of these things in any combination, on any given day; then being here, you'll think you've died and gone to heaven.......
Salary package includes:
* $35,000 starting annual salary
* Paid sick days
* Paid UVM Dairy/Horticulture Extension professional development time, coursework,books
* Paid vacation
* Paid child leave (school & medical appointments)
* Personal use of fully tooled shop/equipment repair facility
* Paid personal days
* Paid holidays
* Housing benefit may be possible after a year for the right candidate
* Benefits commence after four months of employment
* Advancement in salary and responsibilities is available and hinges on personal performance
We are looking for a man with the above listed skills, who wants to learn more, and is looking to settle into a place where he is recognized and appreciated.
Added July 18, 2016
Contact: Robbie Nuzzo
For additional information on the events below, click here.
July & August
July 28 & 29, 2016
Live Roots 24/7/365: PASA’s 2nd Annual Summer Soil Health Conference
Grange Fairgrounds, Centre Hall, PA
Thursday, August 4th to Saturday, August 6th
Grasstravaganza 2016: Healthy Soils, Healthy Animals, Healthy Farms
Alfred State College, Alfred (Allegany County), NY
August 9, 2016
Organic Dairy Day in Morris
West Central Research and Outreach Center
46352 State Hwy 329 | Morris, MN 56267
August 12-14, 2016
Cultivating the Organic Grassroots Movement:
NOFA Summer Conference UMass Amherst, Amherst, MA
It’s a spring day on Jeff and Kathy Bragg’s Rainbow Valley Farm; a quintessential late April day with a sparkling blue sky and temperatures hovering in the mid-60’s. The patio wind chimes sing and birds chatter, oblivious to the hub of economy and industry that surrounds this peaceful abode. A CROPP producer, Rainbow Valley is one of the largest organic dairy farms in the state of Maine, milking roughly 160 cows, primarily Holstein and Jersey/Holstein crosses with some traces of Normande, and more recently German Fleckvieh. The average yearly production per cow hovers around 18,000 pounds. Certified organic in 2004 during the second major wave of transition to organic production, the Braggs manage nearly 1000 acres of open land. To read the complete article please go to:
Added May 24, 2016
On April 13, 2016, the USDA National Organic Program (NOP) published regulations concerning Animal Welfare with a Proposed Rule entitled Organic Livestock and Poultry Practices. The expectation of the organic livestock community was that this rule would concentrate on poultry, especially clarifying outdoor access and building on the Access to Pasture regulation of 2010 by implementing NOSB recommendations. Unfortunately, this is not what happened. Despite assurances from the NOP that the regulation should be viewed through the interpretations of the accompanying webinar (https://www.ams.usda.gov/rules-regulations/organic-livestock-and-poultry-practices) the language within the Proposed Rule is what will become law. One of the reasons for the regulation is that both enforcement of existing regulation and NOP Guidance about interpretation of access to the outside for poultry has been ignored, allowing the porch-style poultry operation to double over the last five years. The difficulty of enforcing the access to the outside for poultry and the amount of market share and profit at stake was further emphasized as conventional and organic poultry producers joined together to override the USDA NOP process of comment on regulation through Congressional action. The National Organic Coalition and the Farmers Union, plus many organizations and individuals, worked together to stop a rider being attached to the appropriations bill in the House and Senate. See their letter >
We delayed the print publication of the May 2016 NODPA News in order to include an article on the Proposed Regulation to ensure that those organic dairies without internet connection would be able to read the rule and send in their comments. To read the article, please go to:
The Federation of Organic Dairy Farmers (FOOD Farmers) is developing comments to respond to the NOP to ensure that we have a Final Rule that we can live with. We hold regular conference calls and welcome anyone who wants to join the discussion. Until we hear about any extension we are under a tight time limitation to get our comments into the NOP by June 13th 2016, so please send us your comments as soon as possible. Comments can be sent to Ed Maltby at email@example.com , or faxed to 1-866-554-9483 or mailed to NODPA, 30 Keets Road, Deerfield, MA 01342.OTA updates its Organic
The Organic Trade Association (OTA) has sent an amended proposal for an organic checkoff to the USDA AMS, which published it on their website. They have made some technical edits based on USDA feedback, plus some changes based on the nine partial proposals developed by producer groups and their supporters. The OTA changed the definition of research based on feedback from NODPA and the National Farmers Union (NFU) and they made a change to how funds are allocated to ensure that agriculture research and producer education are a higher priority. OTA continue to propose a rather complicated system of nomination of the governing Board members to represent a region based on a non-existent database of organic operations with more than $250,000 in gross organic sales in the previous year. Plus they gave producers fewer seats on the Board, and producers make up only 6 out of the 16 members. Both the allocation of checkoff funds and the final appointment of Board members is the decision of a political appointee, the Secretary of Agriculture. We are all familiar with how those decisions are made in Washington DC.
In conversations with USDA AMS, the no-organic check-off coalition of producer groups has surmised that there is no timeline for when AMS might publish a full proposal on the Federal Register. USDA did say they will accept further comment and analysis of OTA’s amended proposal which we will be supplying in the next few weeks. You have probably been bothered by “robo calls” about the organic checkoff. Producers who have tried to tell the caller that they want to register a no vote have not been allowed to. Producers who have questioned how the $250,000 figure of gross organic sales and the calculation of net organic income will be determined have been told it will be on the honor system of self-declaration. That makes it the first tax levied that is based on the honor system. You will also have received literature claiming that everyone will pay a little and that the majority of the checkoff tax will be paid by handlers/processors. Consumers, retailers, marketers, transportation companies and other service providers will pay nothing, and the system that producers know well, of trickle-down economics, will come into effect as processors pass any check-off costs on to producers with a lower pay price. Growth in organic sales is being fueled by cheap imports, some with questionable integrity, that are undermining the pay price of domestic producers. As we have said many times, if we need domestic organic production to increase we need to pay producers a fair and sustained price for their organic products.
Please save the date for the 16th Annual NODPA Field Days on Thursday and Friday, September 29th and 30th in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania where we will feature a farm tour of organic dairy farmer Cliff Hawbaker, who owns two farms in Franklin and Cumberland counties in Pennsylvania. We are excited to announce that our Keynote Speaker on Thursday evening will be John Kempf, Founder, Advancing Eco Agricul-ture. For more details please go to: Field Days Overview
“John Kempf, a young man from Northeast Ohio with an unlikely story, is driven by a mission to globally impact the food supply by providing farmers with a way to grow disease and insect resistant crops with complete plant nutrition.
John’s story begins when he was a 14 year old boy growing up on a family farm, where his father gave him the responsibility of overseeing all the drip irrigation and foliar applications on the farm. John really enjoyed this work, and because he felt a strong connection to the plants, he could quickly feel the results that were being seen in the crops, and how plants were responding to the materials he was applying.” For the full article please go to: Field Days Keynote
Recent Odairy Discussions
A farmer new to grazing asked how to group his herd of 45 cows with a service bull while outside and on pasture. Another producer was frustrated by two cows with recurrent mastitis. And there was a wide ranging discussion about the proposed animal welfare rule.
Added May 1, 2016
The Federation of Organic Dairy Farmers (FOOD Farmers) has requested an additional 30 days (to July 1, 2016) for comments on the Proposed Rule, National Organic Program, Organic Livestock and Poultry Practices. Many of the provisions are a surprise and require detailed evaluation and discussion with our members. Despite many comments submitted to the National Organic Standards Board in 2010 and 2011, this Proposed Rule has many provisions that make no sense to organic livestock farms and in fact are different from NOSB recommendations from 2011. FOOD Farmers have formed a committee to work on comments to this rule but we need more time as this is a very busy time of year for livestock producers. To download a copy of the request letter: Request for extension
Read the attached creative and tongue in cheek letter from George Wright, an organic dairy producer of long standing, who has suffered the frustration of working within the organic standards to make a living for his family and employees. He was one of those that labored to supply sensible comment and reflection back in 2010 and 2011 thinking that it would be listened to and taken to heart. He is also a producer that has always been willing to travel to advocate for other producers and for the integrity of the organic seal. Please read the full letter with an open mind: Dear NOP ...
“In the last few years, while working on writing a book, I’ve had the opportunity to visit many successful organic dairy farms and learn more about how farmers in different climates have successfully designed and managed their pastures. I visited farms providing all or most of the herds dry matter from pasture during the grazing season, as well as farms on more limited land bases where grazing only provides 40 to 50% of the herd’s intake needs. Some used only perennial plants, while others used innovative mixtures of both annuals and perennials. The successful grazing systems were each unique and creatively designed to meet the farm and farm family goals.” To read the complete article by Sarah Flack, please go to:
There was a good discussion on the use of hydrated lime on organic farms. It is generally regarded as a prohibited substance; some certifiers will not allow its use for any purpose, but one producer pointed out that the NOP regulations specifically allow hydrated lime as an external pest control. It specifically disallows its use to “cauterize physical alterations or deodorize animal wastes”. Other uses are not discussed in the standards. One producer wanted to use hydrated lime in bedded pack pens at clean out to sanitize the pen before clean bedding and new animals were introduced. The farmer said his certifier would not allow it, and others on the list suggested that this was a misinterpretation of the rule. A consultant suggested that very clear and precise communication is needed with the certifier in these situations, especially where a substance may be allowed for one type of use, but prohibited in another. A crop farmer added that hydrated lime is very caustic and chemically reactive if applied to soil, certainly the reason why it is not allowed as a fertilizer. But he feels that it is an important product for barn sanitation, and after reacting with water and organic matter (from manure and wet surfaces), it goes through a chemical change bringing its pH to near neutral by the time it is spread onto the fields with the manure. To read the full article please click here.
Letter to the Editor
“I recently received the current paper edition of NODPA News [January, 2016] and read with interest the article about the young couple focused on building a life for themselves on the dairy farm in the NE Kingdom. At 64 years old, I have learned that it is human nature to complain, and that farmers are not immune from this.” To read the complete letter from Charlie Green, Moravia, NY please go to: Letter to the Editor
5 Ways You Can Support NODPA
Ten years ago NODPA was formed in response to a threat of a drop in milk price. In 2014 NODPA is the only organization whose mission is to represent the interest of organic dairy producers no matter who they sell their milk to.
Click here for a summary of the many ways you can support NODPA and the farmers it represents.
Check out the 20 new entries in our business directory ...
... and consider adding your own business. MORE