FARM Program review published
The National Dairy FARM Program (FARM) has published the “2020 Year in Review” which is the annual summary for the FARM Program, exploring the achievements and challenges faced during the year. Created by the National Milk Producers Federation in partnership with Dairy Management Inc., the National Dairy FARM Program works with dairy farmers, the producer community, and industry partners to show customers and consumers that the dairy industry is taking the very best care of cows and the environment, producing safe, wholesome milk, and adhering to the highest standards of workforce development.
“As the industry shifted with the pandemic, we adapted the program to fit farmer’s and program participant’s needs,” said Emily Yeiser Stepp, Vice President for the FARM Program at the National Milk Producers Federation. “We were still able to provide value, develop helpful resources, and provide assurances of on-farm social responsibility for the dairy supply chain despite the rollercoaster of 2020.”
This annual report focused on COVID-19, Animal Care, Antibiotic Stewardship, Workforce Development, Environmental Stewardship, and Customer Outreach. The Review also summarizes changes made to the FARM Program Areas in 2020. FARM Animal Care Version 4 went into effect on January 1st, with updates supporting closer farmer-veterinarian relationships, requiring continuing education for all employees, and adding a new standard for pain management when disbudding animals.
FARM also launched Version 2 of the Environmental Stewardship program which includes updated crop emissions factors, a breakdown of greenhouse gas emissions by gas type, a metric on the use of nutrient management plans, and the ability to capture the benefits of solid-liquid separation, and solar and wind energy. Additionally, Version 1 of the Workforce Development evaluation became available and focuses on human resources and safety best practices. It provides assurances to the supply chain and helps farmers identify what will be most useful to implement within their operation and track improvement over time.
Read the full report here.