GPS Dairy Consulting holds its 2016 Dairy Leaders Forum—Growing as Better Leaders:
Leading a dairy operation has never been more important or more challenging with the increased size, technology and labor involved. The key to success is learning and honing the leadership and technical skills needed to improve efficiency, manage risk, control costs and lead the people who make up the dairy's team. With that in mind GPS Dairy Consulting consultants and their clients met at Mystic Lake Casino and Hotel in Prior Lake, MN on November 16-17, 2016 for the 2016 Dairy Leaders Forum—Growing as Better Leaders. The meeting was an intensive, highly interactive meeting allowing dairy owners to network, collaborate and discuss with some of the industry's most respected producers how to squeeze more profits from their dairy operations. Attendees learned how to hone their leadership skills and think like a CEO, improve efficiency, manage risk and control costs in better ways.
Feed and how it is fed is arguably the most important part of any dairy—small or large. For this reason, understanding the basics of dairy nutrition, feed mixing and on-time delivery are critical. As another aspect of their Leadership Investment for Tomorrow philosophy GPS Dairy Consulting has organized a series of feeder schools and a three-tier Master Feeder Certification program to teach dairy nutrition basics to front-line feed managers. The goal of the Master Feeder Certification program is to elevate the feeder position in the industry to better align with the fiscal impact the feeding management has on any dairy. The certification program is a three-tier process that allows feeders to learn, grow and advance in their responsibilities and performance.
Level 1 – Offered in 2016 and again in 2017 focuses on the essentials of feeding dairy cows, with topics including basics of rumen function, silage face management, managing dry matter, safety, feedbunk management, TMR audits and feed monitoring, the financial aspect of feeding management, measuring and controlling shrink, and the mechanics of a mixer. Communication, teamwork and the importance of the entire feed team’s consistency are key areas developed.
Level 2 – To be started in 2017 this second tier is for those who have completed Level 1. The curriculum will be more in-depth with a special emphasis on software, tracking ingredients, key performance indicators and monitoring metrics.
Master Feeder – Set for 2018, this is the culmination of the Master Feeder Certification program. The expectation is a “Master Feeder” will have the managerial and leadership skills to successfully lead and manage a feed center at the largest dairies.
For information on how to enroll your feeders in the GPS Master Feeder Certification program contact your GPS consultant.
Experience only brings value when it is shared. The nutritionists that make up GPS Dairy Consulting are proven leaders in their respective areas with vast experience and a solid reputation for delivering quality service and positive results to their clients. At GPS Dairy Consulting we share our experience with each other as colleagues; we share our experience as coaches and mentors for each other; and, we share our experience with our clients, their managers and their employees. Building upon the experiences of all of us we are able to bring the power of the entire GPS Dairy Consulting team to every dairy we work with.
In order to deliver anything you must first take personal ownership. GPS Dairy Consultants don't simply hand off the many challenges that come up on a dairy operation; we get involved. At GPS Dairy Consulting we take ownership and responsibility to deliver results to ourselves, our peers and especially to our customers.
Success must be sustained and built upon. We will not be satisfied by delivering a single success. At GPS Dairy Consulting our consultants create value by delivering results. We capture the momentum of those results to create success and we build upon each individual success to create sustained success.
Independent Dairy Consulting
GPS Dairy Consulting, LLC is a professional team of dairy nutrition consultants servicing dairies throughout the midwest and beyond. We are leaders in the industry, working with some of the most influential dairy herds in the country. Although we are united under GPS Dairy Consulting,LLC we are each independent nutrition consultants working directly for our dairy producer clientele. Read more...
Featured GPS Consultants
Fernando Diaz, DVM, PhD.
As an independent dairy consultant, Fernando provides nutrition and management consultation to dairies in the I-29 Dairy Corridor including feeding and bunk management, diet optimization, forage management, key performance indicators evaluation, cow comfort assessment, and transition cow management. Before joining GPS Dairy Consulting he worked as Director of Operations in a large multi-site dairy in WI where his main responsibilities were feed quality control, crops harvesting, employee training, protocols and SOPs, and Nutrient Management Plans.
Dr. Diaz grew up on a small dairy farm in Toledo, Spain. He obtained his Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from the University of Extremadura in 2004 and worked as a dairy veterinarian for six years before joining the dairy team at South Dakota State University, where he received his Master of Science in Dairy Nutrition. Fernando received his Ph.D. in Ruminant Nutrition at the Technical University of Madrid (Spain). His research career has been mainly focused in protein nutrition and metabolism. He has conducted studies based on rumen-protected amino acids, slow-release urea, and protein co-products with the objectives of improving the performance and feed efficiency of high production dairy cows, and the sustainability/profitability of dairy farms. Fernando has published several peer-reviewed scientific journal articles, 12 scientific abstracts, 50 popular press papers, and a Food & Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO) book chapter titled “Feeding Biofuel Co-Products to Dairy Cattle”. (List of Publications)
He is a member of American Dairy Science Association (ADSA), American Association of Bovine Practitioner (AABP), National Mastitis Council (NMC), and European Federation for Animal Science (EAAP), and he is certified by the American Registry of Professional Animal Scientists (ARPAS). In addition, he is a volunteer consultant on the El Salvador Farmer-to-Farmer Program funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development. Fernando lives in Brookings, SD with his wife Nuria and his daughter Daniela.
GPS Dairy Consulting
Julie Opgenorth is a senior at Iowa State University pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Animal Science with a certificate in leadership studies. She grew up in Northwest Iowa and gained a passion for agriculture while working at a local dairy. Julie has experience managing analysis laboratories and assisting swine and dairy nutrition graduate research at Iowa State.
Responsibilities include: writing and following specific protocols, recording accurate measurements, keeping diligent records, following proper husbandry practices of swine and dairy animals, and observing and caring for research animals.
After graduating in December 2017, she plans on pursuing graduate school in ruminant nutrition and contributing to the dairy industry.