Southern dairy producers can join those from across the region at a January conference in Atlanta addressing some of the major issues currently facing the industry. Stephanie Hill Ward, assistant professor in animal and dairy science at Mississippi State University, is chairing the Southern Dairy Conference planning committee. She said the objective of the Jan. 24-25 conference is to offer informative and thought provoking presentations on all facets of the dairy industry. Click here to download a brochure. “The conference will address production, processing and manufacturing. Topics include policy and legislation, milk prices, animal well-being, risk management, farm ownership and the next generation of dairy farmers,” Ward said.

The conference will be held at the Embassy Suites near the Atlanta airport. Lodging reservations must be made directly with the hotel with a Southern Dairy Conference rate of $120 per night. Reservations can be made by contacting (800) 362-2779 or (404) 767-1988.

Registration for the conference before Jan. 11 is $125 for students and $200 for others. Late registrations are $250. Online registration is available at More conference information can be found at

The conference is sponsored by the Southern Extension and Research Activity 15 regional committee (SERA15). The conference is planned by the Southern land-grant universities: Auburn, Clemson, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana State, Mississippi State, Missouri, North Carolina State, Texas A&M and Virginia Tech. PD

—From Southern Dairy Conference news release


Topics and Speakers
• The Road Ahead for the Dairy Industry: Challenges and Opportunities, Scott Brown of the University of Missouri
• Economic Effect of Dairy Security Act of 2011, Scott Brown of the University of Missouri
• The Southeast and Dairy Policy, Calvin Covington, retired Dairy Breed and Cooperative Executive
• Factors Impacting Farm Milk Price, retired Dairy Breed and Cooperative Executive
• DFA Perspective on Dairy Future, Rick Smith of Dairy Farmers of America
• Experiences in Teaching Dairy Risk Management using the FACTsim Market Simulation, John Van Sickle of the University of Florida
• SUDIA Update, Cheryl Hayn, SUDIA general manager
• Enhancing Dairy’s Image by Building Consumer Trust, Mollie Waller with Strategic Business Relations Dairy Management Inc.
• Improving Animal Well-Being through Facilities Management, Peter Krawczel of the University of Tennessee
• North Carolina Dairy Advantage: Growing N.C.’s Dairy Industry, Shannon Davidson of N.C. Dairy Advantage
• Training the Next Generation of the Dairy Industry, Cathy Williams of Louisiana State University
• The Grazing Dairy Model: Providing a Viable and Exciting Business Opportunity for Young and Old, Tony Finch of Grasslands Dairies, LLC
• Transition of Farm Ownership, David Marrison of Ohio State University Extension
• Young Farmer Panel Discussion; Jeff Cornwell of North Carolina, Denise and Curtis Jones of Kentucky, and a Grassland Dairies Producer from Missouri