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SYRACUSE, NY -- Professionals looking to improve milk quality and dairy profitability should register now to attend the National Mastitis Council (NMC) regional meeting July 28-29 at the Holiday Inn Syracuse/Liverpool in Syracuse, N.Y. For full meeting details and registration, visit www.nmconline.org.

The meeting includes program sessions, a selection of short courses and farm tours all designed to give attendees practical information to take back to their farms and practices.

"NMC's regional meetings are designed to improve milk quality throughout the industry by providing professionals with the latest information about mastitis control, udder health and milking management" says Frank Welcome, the 2015 NMC regional program chairman and senior extension veterinarian with Quality Milk Production Services. "In addition to learning and networking, participants will see first-hand New York State's thriving dairy industry and should leave with new skills and ideas they can immediately apply on their farms. I look forward to what we expect to be an informative, productive and valuable event."

On Tuesday, July 28, participants can choose from nine short courses. Topics will include troubleshooting bacterial problems in milk, emerging mastitis pathogens, facts about robotic milking systems, on-farm bacterial culture systems for rapid diagnosis and more. Two of the courses about parlor procedures and mastitis biology will be taught in Spanish.

The full-day program on Wednesday, July 29, will include presentations from university researchers and other industry leaders. Topics will include developing treatment protocols based on pathogen identification and designing a long-term milking center evaluation program. An afternoon session on the role of marketing cooperatives in milk quality will be followed by a panel discussion.

A post-conference tour of four unique farm operations, as well as a reception at a local winery, will take place Thursday, July 30. The farm tours are scheduled to include a 3,600-cow dairy with a 100-stall rotary parlor, a sheep and goat dairy with 750 ewes and 600 does, a 235-cow dairy with a robotic milking system and a sixth-generation dairy with a 31,193-pound rolling herd average.

"These are very productive farms using a variety of technologies to successfully manage milk quality and udder health," says Welcome. "Attendees will see use of manure solids for bedding, robotic milking, pathogen-based treatment protocols and top-notch parlor management protocols."

Farm owners and managers, milking personnel, milk quality specialists, veterinarians, milking equipment personnel, researchers, extension specialists, nutritionists, students and others interested in the production of quality milk are encouraged to attend.

The deadline to pre-register is July 21. Registration for the short courses and post-conference farm tours are limited availability, on a first-come, first-served basis. Find details and registration information at www.nmconline.org. For questions, contact the NMC office at nmc@nmconline.org or 608-848-4615.

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