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Digest Highlights: Bills address dairy labor, school milk issues. Danone expanding plant-based beverage operations. Find a summary of these stories and updates on previous Progressive Dairyman news stories here.

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Blood meal prices are at their lowest since the USDA started reporting prices for the feedstuff in 2014.

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While anti-dairy advocates and the dairy industry itself focus on declining fluid milk sales, there’s good dairy news: Latest USDA data shows 2016 U.S. per capita consumption of dairy products (on a milk-equivalent, milkfat basis) rose 16 pounds, the second-largest annual jump dating back to 1975.

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This month’s VAS DC305 tip is on how somatic cell count can affect production. Everyone is conscious of what their bulk tank somatic cell count is because in many cases, it affects the milk check received. But somatic cell counts also affect the level of production that an animal will have, which also affects the milk check but not in an as-obvious way.

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Update Highlights: Eli Lilly is reviewing ‘strategic alternatives’ for Elanco. Cargill to purchase Diamond V. Find a summary of these and other dairy industry-related news here.

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