Are you interested in reducing mastitis cases to save time and money?

A multi-state, land grant university led survey project aims at helping dairy producers reduce mastitis cases and the associated cost through improved management, control strategies and communication with employees.

You might be getting a survey about mastitis control in the mail soon addressing the important problem of somatic cell count and mastitis control. Led by veterinarian Dr. Ron Erskine from Michigan State University (MSU), a team of researchers from MSU, Pennsylvania State University, Florida A&M University and Mississippi State University are conducting research to improve mastitis control and prevention. The goal of the research, funded with a grant from the USDA, is to improve food security and milk quality by reducing mastitis rates and somatic cell counts through preventive management. Researchers hope that by identifying what mastitis control strategies are currently working and what are the biggest obstacles facing owners and managers; they can produce guidelines to help manage mastitis on dairy farms of any size. The tools produced should help both large and small farms reduce mastitis cases and animal health costs while increasing production and milk quality by identifying key management priorities and goals.

 The first step of the research is a mail survey sent directly to dairy farms to ask about how you currently manage mastitis and what your goals are for the future. This information will be helpful to the researchers as they develop tools that can be used on farms to help owners and managers improve mastitis control. If you receive the survey in the mail, we encourage you to respond and share your insights. Your input is crucial to make sure that researchers understand how somatic cell count and mastitis are controlled in diverse farm systems and to make sure that the tools developed address the needs of farmers and managers. The survey is being mailed to a random sample of dairy farms and should take less than 20 minutes to complete. Responses are anonymous. Please share your expertise and experience and help make sure that farmers’ voices are heard.

If you have any questions about the survey or the project, please call Dr. Ron Erskine at (517) 353-4637 or Dr. Rebecca Schewe at (662) 325-5124. For more information on Dairy Team programs and resources please visit our website.

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