Registration is now open for the 2020 Dairy Calf & Heifer Association (DCHA) Annual Conference, April 7-9, at the Alliant Energy Center, Madison, Wis. With a conference theme of “Shaping the Future,” attendees will gain valuable knowledge and practical strategies to build a strong future for their calf and heifer business enterprises.
“The conference agenda features timely topics and helpful strategies that calf and heifer raisers can take back to their businesses to enhance animal welfare, safety, animal and worker health, profitability and sustainability,” said Tamilee Nennich, DCHA Annual Conference co-chair. “This year’s conference, once again, provides engaging networking opportunities – with peers and industry colleagues.”
Megan Kissel, a 2020 DCHA Annual Conference co-chair, added, “As the only association that focuses on calf and heifer management, the DCHA conference highlights many innovative ideas, strategies, procedures and products related to raising dairy calves and heifers. It’s a must-attend event for anyone who wants to shape their business for the future.”
Keynote speaker Matt Rush kicks off the conference. He says, “You can do more, be more and have more than you ever thought possible; you just have to be willing to get over yourself to get there.” Rush is passionate about helping others and is dedicated to developing a strong, successful future for current and upcoming generations.
In addition to Rush, Emily Yeiser Stepp, senior director of The National Dairy FARM (Farmers Assuring Responsible Management) Program, will address FARM and how it relates to DCHA’s Gold Standards; and Don Höglund, owner of Dairy Stockmanship Company, will discuss calf handling as general session presentations.
Producer panels, presentations and breakout sessions round out the program and feature timely, care- and profit-enhancing topics, such as heifer development, calf nutrition, business management, calf group housing and dairy on beef.
The 2020 DCHA preconference tour, set for the morning of April 7, features Larson Acres, Evansville, Wis., with an opportunity to see their all-in, all-out calf management system. Positive-pressure ventilation tubes run constantly in occupied barns to supplement natural ventilation. In addition, Unviersity of Wisconsin-Madison’s Jennifer Van Os will lead discussions on social rearing of calves and disbudding that morning. Plus, Terri Ollivett, UW-Madison School of Veterinary Medicine assistant professor, will address calf pneumonia and ventilation.