Current Progressive Dairy digital edition

New conference to highlight California research for producers

Progressive Dairyman Editor Walt Cooley Published on 24 February 2016

Producers nationwide know well the California Mastitis Test and the California Net Energy System. These now-commonplace industry tools began as research at the University of California, says Deanne Meyer, one of the university’s cooperative extension dairy specialists.

Meyer believes there’s no less innovation in the university’s ongoing research. Yet in the nation’s number one dairy state, there hasn’t been a multi-day conference that exists elsewhere to present that research.



That will change in March when a new conference will highlight the institution’s current work and its applicability for California producers. Meyer hopes the event will become an annual one.

“We’re excited about it. We’re hoping dairymen come,” Meyer says.

The Golden State Dairy Management Conference will be held March 8-10 in Seaside, California. Many of the presentations will focus on topics specific to California producers and their unique challenges and opportunities.

“The big difference about this conference is that all the information is going to be generated from projects actually done in California. The research is happening at the commercial level on farms or on campuses. It’s very much targeted toward California,” says Jennifer Heguy, a University of California cooperative extension dairy farm adviser for Merced, Stanislaus and San Joaquin counties.

For example, Heguy says the conference’s talks on crop production will provide information about growing forages in California.


“All of these talks will be very specific to California – our climate, soils, water availability and water delivery. These sessions would be very different if you placed them somewhere [else] in the country,” Heguy says.

Other sessions will cover California-specific dairy management issues including solar power installations, silage pile emissions and manure management regulations.

“In California, we have a lot of regulatory considerations. Our day-to-day activities are often regulated,” Heguy says. “For instance, we have air and water regulations that are very different from the rest of the country."

"We’re not going to be talking about the regulations at the conference, but a lot of the research we are doing keeps those regulations in mind. This conference is about how to move dairies forward while still complying with regulations that other parts of the country don’t really have.”

Conference planners like Heguy and Meyer hope the conference will highlight that California has an active dairy research program.

“We have a lot people doing really good work on campuses and at the county level. It’s not just about research but how dairies can apply it to their everyday activities,” Heguy says. “This is a really good opportunity for the industry to attend a conference right in their backyard. There really is in this conference something for everyone.”  PD


Visit the 2016 Golden State Dairy Management Conference site for more information about the conference.