Course integrates concepts of cow biology, management, economics, and sustainability of dairy operations. Special emphasis is given to management practices and technologies that affect cattle health and well-being, milk production and quality, reproduction, herd growth, milking, and environmental impact of dairy production. Basic concepts of dairy foods processing and the importance of milk quality for dairy products are covered. Laboratory sessions include hands-on learning of dairy software, analysis of alternative strategies, and decision-making. Commercial farm case studies are used to integrate concepts of biology and management learned in the course.
Students will be able to describe general features and recognize the challenges and opportunities of the global and national dairy industry.
Students will be able to understand the breadth and complexity of the biological mechanisms underpinning dairy cattle milk production, health, and reproduction and their implications on herd performance.
Students will be able to evaluate the past and present performance of a dairy herd using computer software.
Students will be able to recognize the implications of herd management programs and the use of technology on the profitability and sustainability of dairy farms.
Students will be able to describe the methods used for milk processing and the manufacture of dairy products and recognize the implications of herd management strategies on the quality and safety of dairy products.