Meet 2019 MMPA Outstanding Young Dairy Cooperator finalists Brian and Jill DeMann of Martin, Michigan. Brian & Jill are active in their community. Brian, a graduate of Michigan Fire Academy, is on the board of directors of Farmers Co-Op Elevator Co., member of Allegan County Farm Bureau and holds many positions at Martin Reformed Church. Jill, with a master’s degree in education, teaches at Martin Reformed Church Preschool and recently celebrated her tenth year teaching. Both Brian and Jill are active in their county’s Young Farmer program and participated in the Washington Legislative Seminar with Farm Bureau. The couple has one child, Kinsler (4).
In 2005, Brian and Jill began dairy farming with their family on Clearview Dairy Farm. Their drive to produce quality, commodity goods has encouraged them to adopt efficient and progressive management techniques. Their farm is currently working to expand their social media presence, informing consumers about dairy products and are working on hosting farm tours and internship opportunities with local schools and colleges.
What actions do you take to produce high quality milk?
1. Consistent milking routine
“There are two people on the farm who help manage our milking routines, and at least one of them is a part of every milking. They help enforce and monitor milking procedures, including prep, forestripping, lag time and post dip.”
2. Cow nutrition
“We regularly test our feed dry matter and nutrient value of raised forages, make adjustments accordingly with our nutritionist, frequently test for mycotoxins, and have scheduled feed push-up times.”
3. Cow comfort
“There’s no doubt that stocking density, cooling by fans and sprinklers in warm weather, and frequent grooming and addition of sand to stalls greatly help the milk quality on our farm.”
4. Genetic selection
“We have been strictly AI for years and a mated herd. We choose sires for higher component yield and low SCC, over choosing for production, and can see a difference in the last few generation’s component yield and SCC score on our milk tests.”
5. Milking and cooling equipment maintenance and system cleaning
“Wash analysis by MMPA Field Representative and our dairy equipment dealer help detect and troubleshoot issues before they affect our milk quality in the tanks.”
This article was originally published in the July/August issue of the Milk Messenger. Subscribe »