Everything for the modern farmer at IDW

By Dairy News

EVERYTHING THE modern dairy farmer needs — from the latest machinery and products, the latest genetics, through to seminars on new research — can be found at International Dairy Week, now in its 29th year.

The expanded format of this popular event continues to draw farmers from throughout Australia to Tatura in January

This year’s event will run from Sunday, January 21 until Thursday, January 25, concluding with the presentation of the RASV interbreed champions and Australia’s grand champion cow.

Daily admission is $10 for adults; children are free. Weekly passes can be purchased for $30.

Kicking off the festivities is the event’s non-denominational church service — a popular start to the event now in its 22nd year. It will be held on the Sunday morning in the Blackmore & Leslie Complex from 9.30 am — 10.30 am.

The next generation of dairy farmers then take centre stage with the Holstein Australia Victoria Youth Challenge Trials at midday, followed by the State Junior Judging final.

And it’s another big day from 8 am on Monday with the ABS Australia/Ridley All Breeds National Youth Show, followed by the IDW Youth Showmanship Classes, starting at 3 pm.


Seminars will be held from 8 am Tuesday, through to midday Thursday.

The seminars cover a variety of subjects, including the ImProving Herds project, highly efficient calf rearing systems, lifting production without in-feed antibiotics, cow bedding, correct vaccination, sexed genetics and breakthroughs in sexing technology, breeding for heat tolerance, profitable cow housing, profiting from bobby calves, LED technology, value adding calves and maintaining the industry’s social licence.

On Tuesday, the Dairy Farm and Machinery Field Days, proudly sponsored by Dairy News Australia, begin and run for three days, from Tuesday, January 23, to Thursday, January 25.

Machinery Field Days

Visitors to the Dairy Farm and Machinery Field Days can expect displays that will cover all aspects of their farming operation, with businesses from South Australia, Queensland, Victoria and NSW exhibiting.

Several sales of elite performers will be held throughout the week, with Elite Ayshire sale starting at 11.30 am on the Tuesday, and the national Guernsey and Brown Swiss sales held at 6 pm that night.

The Jersey Showcase Sale will be held at 11.30 am on the Wednesday, with the World Wide Sires Evolution Sale will held that night at 7.30 pm.

There are seven cattle shows across the program and the RASV’s highly coveted Interbreed Champion will be presented as part of IDW.

Throughout the event, visitors can visit an air-conditioned marquee to see daughters of some of ABS’s best bulls in the flesh, who stand out from the crowd.

The ABS Showcase is located adjacent to the Blackmore & Leslie pavilion and will be open every day from 10 am.

Virtual farm tours

On Tuesday evening from 7.30 pm at Tatura Park, virtual farm tours will be held in the Blackmore & Leslie Pavilion, “touring” Canadian operation Ferme Blondin, in Quebec, and Carpenter Farms, in Tasmania.

Ferme Blondin is a seventh generation farm owned by Simon Lalande and Kim Cote in St. Placide, Quebec.They milk 125 cows in two separate tie-stall facilities.

Dann Brady is the sales and marketing manager for the herd, working on the genetics program, managing the embryo sales and marketing of the herd.

Blondin is a unique setup as 75 per cent of the income for the farm is derived from genetic sales. Whether it be through live cattle, embryos or bull sales.

A new 250-cow free stall facility was built this year to help handle the large number of fresh young cows sold each year.

Garry and Bev Carpenter milk more than 850 cows through robots and hope to produce seven million litres of milk. The robots are part of a retirement and lifestyle plan.

With the new facilities the Carpenters hope to be producing nearly seven million litres of milk within a season and a half.

The national All Breeds Youth Camp will again be held as part of IDW following the success of last year’s event. The camp enables its young participants to develop their leadership skills as well as improving their cattle showmanship.

Women In Dairy dinner

The Power of Women in Dairying event — now in its third year — is quickly becoming one of the most popular events at IDW. It will be held on Tuesday, January 23 at 6.30 pm.

It’s an excellent opportunity for women who want to create opportunities for networking, learning and inspiration from others working in the dairy industry. And just to share a meal and a laugh.

Guest speakers are Di Schubert, who will share her highs and lows — the excitement of having an IDW Chapmion Cow, and the low of losing a third of their herd with botulism. She will also offer insight into her obsession — a 7000 teddy bear and doll collection!

A young ambassador from Orygen — the National Centre of Excellence in Youth Mental Health — will also discuss her experiences.

The Bette Hall Power of Women in Dairy Excellence Award will also be presented.

The Dairy News Australia team will also be at the field days to chat to exhibitors and visitors.