The National Dairy FARM Program has concluded the last of three “Train the Trainer” workshops, and will begin second-party evaluator courses in the coming weeks. The Train the Trainer workshop is a two-day course with classroom and on the farm training designed to prepare instructors to teach the “Second Party Evaluator” course. The second-party evaluator course is a four-hour classroom training session to train for on-farm evaluations. Three regional Train the Trainer workshops were completed by the end of last month (Rochester, MN on May 24-25; Fresno, CA on June 29-30; and Harrisburg, PA on July 20-21) with attendees from all areas of the dairy industry including veterinarians, cooperative staff, processor staff, and university extension personnel.
Outreach continues to various groups across the country. Dairy FARM staff has met with a variety of different cooperatives, producer groups, universities, and processors about the program. Response continues to be supportive and we expect to have good participation in the program as it is put into operation. In California, DFA, Land O’Lakes, Hilmar, and CDI have all supported the implementation of the program. Dairy FARM will be rolling out participation information to cooperatives, processors, and independent producers in the coming months including the participation fee, which will be used to perform third-party verification.