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Northeast Organic Dairy Producers Alliance

Finding Value in Organic Dairy: Sheffer’s Grassland Dairy, Hoosick Falls, NY, owned and operated by Eric and Wally Sheffer

Finding Value in Organic Dairy: Sheffer’s Grassland Dairy, Hoosick Falls, NY, owned and operated by Eric and Wally Sheffer

By Tamara Scully, NODPA News contributing writer

Hoosick Falls, NY: Since 1774, the Sheffer family has owned and operated this bucolic farm, which now totals 430 acres, and Eric Sheffer is the sixth generation to do so. While there have been many changes throughout the centuries, the latest has been their 2017 transition to organic certification. They began transitioning to organic in 2014, with full certification in 2017. The farm, which supplies milk for Stonyfield Organic, is certified by Pennsylvania Certified Organic (PCO).

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posted to Featured Farms on Sun, Nov 20, 2022

Organic Dairy Buyers, Processors and Producers Ask Congress for Help

By Ed Maltby, NODPA Executive Director

On November 28, 2022 organic livestock advocates, buyers, processors and farmers sent a letter to Senate and House Appropriations and Agriculture Committee Leadership asking for emergency funding for organic livestock and poultry because of the catastrophic economic challenges faced by farmers. The seriousness of the problem is emphasized by the wide diversity of the groups that have signed on to the letter acknowledging the desperation across the country and the continuing loss of organic dairies. After six years of a pay price that is significantly lower than the costs of production, producers have no reserves left. Despite record retail prices, producer share of the organic retail price has dropped to 27%. Organic milk buyers say they cannot increase pay price to a level that can help organic dairies cash flow their operations. Contact Ed Maltby, NODPA Executive Director, for more information: 413-427-7323. or by email emaltby@comcast.net

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posted to Industry News on Sun, Nov 20, 2022

Strategies for a Sustainable Pay Price for Organic Dairy: Field Days Session Summary

Strategies for a Sustainable Pay Price for Organic Dairy: Field Days Session Summary

By Tamara Scully, NODPA News contributing writer

A panel of industry experts focused on one of the primary concerns organic dairy farmers have today - pay price - at the NODPA 2022 Field Days this past September. The session featured Sharad Mathur, Dairy Farmers of America (DFA); Dan Smith, New England Dairy Compact; Jim Goodman and Siena Chrisman, National Family Farm Coalition (NFFC); and Tade Sullivan, Maine Dairy Industry Association (MDIA).The following is a transcript from the session’s recording.

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posted to Industry News on Sun, Nov 20, 2022

Ask the Vet: Question & Answer Session a Field Days Session Summary

Ask the Vet: Question & Answer Session a Field Days Session Summary

By Tamara Scully, NODPA News contributing writer

The “Ask the Vet” session at NODPA’s annual Field Days is always a highlight. This year, Dayna Locitzer, DVM, of Green Mountain Bovine Clinic in Chesterfield, New Hampshire, and Elizabeth Martens, DVM, of Valleywide Veterinary Services, Bridport, Vermont, fielded attendees’ herd health questions. Below is a transcript of the session recording.

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posted to Organic Production on Sun, Nov 20, 2022

The End of Organic Farming (as we know it)

The End of Organic Farming (as we know it)

By Jim Riddle, Organic Independents LLP Blue Fruit Farm

The fundamental concepts of organic farming have always been, “Feed the Soil, not the Plant,” and “Healthy Soil leads to Healthy Crops, Healthy Animals, Healthy People, and a Healthy Planet.” Now, those concepts have been turned on their head, with a recent Appeals Court ruling that you don’t even need soil for growing terrestrial crops, in order to be certified organic in the United States.

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posted to Industry News on Sun, Nov 20, 2022

Best Nutrition Strategies During Times of High Grain and Input Costs

Best Nutrition Strategies During Times of High Grain and Input Costs

By Bill Kipp, Nutritionist and Dairy Consultant, Middlebury, VT, Heather Darby, UVM Extension, Sara Ziegler, UVM Extension

This article provides highlights from a presentation given at the NODPA Field Days held on September 29th, 2022. Organic grain prices continue to increase as well as most other input costs (Table 1). With ongoing supply chain issues, a war in Ukraine and stagnant milk prices, it is critical to find opportunities to feed more homegrown feed and reduce grain purchases. This article will outline 10 practical approaches to consider while managing high grain costs.

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posted to Organic Production on Sun, Nov 20, 2022

Recent ODairy Discussions – November, 2022

Recent ODairy Discussions – November, 2022

By Liz Bawden, NODPA Board Co-President

Back in the early fall, a producer asked the group about their experience using Pyganic as a fly spray. Another producer offered these tips: “Pyganic, (or its cheaper sister, Evergreen Pyrethrin Concentrate 5.0, from the same company,) can be used as a fine mist knock-down spray at the rate of 1 oz./gallon. Most of the Organic farmers around here mix it with the essential oil-based Fertrell Fly-Aside, for more residual repellency on the pasture.” He noted that Pyganic breaks down rapidly in sunlight, so by itself offers very little in residual effect.

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posted to Recent O-Dairy Discussion on Sun, Nov 20, 2022

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NODPA is the largest grass roots organization of organic dairy producers and has remained true to its original goal of advocating on behalf of producers, regardless of who they sell their milk to, for a sustainable pay price, plus protect the integrity of the USDA Organic Regulations.

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