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TheDairySite Newsletter - 14 September 2012

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Friday 14th September 2012.

Charlotte Johnston - TheDairySite Editor

Charlotte Johnston

Water - The Threat and the Challenge

It is nothing new, global water resources are becoming scarcer and there is increasing competition between agriculture and other industries.

However a new report, The Global Water Crisis: Addressing an Urgent Security Issue, calls on government and policy makers to radically reform attitudes towards water and how it is managed globally.

Agriculture currently accounts for about 71 per cent of global water withdrawals and more than 80 per cent of total withdrawals in the developing world.

It is also estimated that as much as an additional 5,200 cubic kilometres may be needed annually for agriculture alone by 2050.

The report states that this will put enormous pressure on existing water supplies in many parts of the world.

How can we move forward?

Global agriculture must achieve, what some may call an impossible goal, of doubling food production whilst at the same time reducing total water use by 10 per cent by 2050.

Increasing water productivity in agriculture will be a fundamental part of the solution, says the report.

The ability to measure, standardise and report metrics is key to sound management. Knowing, for example, the probability of rainfall and the soil moisture of a region and the water and fertiliser requirements of specific crops will enable precision agriculture, which will yield 'more crop per drop'.

Since the early 1950s, research and investment in agriculture and water management have been high on the political agenda of many new nations in Asia and Africa. Major advances in agricultural productivity, driven by Green Revolution breakthroughs that introduced more resistant crop varieties, together with an increase in fertiliser use and the development of irrigation infrastructure, made it possible to end famine in Asia and relieve a vast number of people from hunger.

Water control is key to increasing agricultural productivity with the same or less water input. It also means investing in new institutions and solutions for demand management, says the report.

Investment in innovative water and land management practices that encourage better water use more sustainably would also help to increase agricultural productivity.

Israel - a leader in precision farming

Israel is an example of a country with scarce water supplies that has turned a vulnerability into a major asset.

Despite the Israeli population nearly tripling since 1964, Israeli farmers have succeeded in producing nine times the amount of food with a mere three per cent increase in water consumption.

This has been made possible by placing proper valuation on water, investing in advanced education, creating platforms for new business ventures, and developing programmes to attract private funds.

A real change needed

The report recognises that whilst it is easy to propose improved policies, implementation is often not as simple. Political constraints must be recognised in creating new models.

On top of this, the uncertainty of climate change must not be overlooked. This summer we have seen severe wet weather affect many producers in Northern Europe, whilst Russia and the US suffered from severe droughts.

There is little doubt that putting water on the global agenda is critical not just in order to feed nine billion people in 2050 with less agricultural water than available today, but also to address the critical development challenge of doing this in a safe, sustainable way while protecting the livelihoods of the vast number of rural poor.

Charlotte Johnston

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Fighting the War on Coccidiosis
Everything is set up; the bedding is fresh, the feeders are in situ and the latest group of happy, healthy calves are wandering about exploring their new home. For a farmer, there are few things more satisfying. In a few short weeks though, it can start to feel like an ambush is taking place as one by one, the calves start to scour, writes Susan McKay, Companion Consultancy.

Dairy Reproductive Management Using AI
Reproductive efficiency of the dairy herd is important to the economic success of the dairy operation. Michael Looper, Professor of Animal Science at the University of Arkansas discussed artificial insemination for dairy reproductive management.

Global Grain Markets Tighten - FAO Cereal Supply and Demand Brief
Continued deterioration of cereal crop prospects over the past two months, due to unfavourable weather conditions in a number of major producing regions, has led to a sharp cut in FAO's world production forecast since the previous report in July. Based on the latest indications, global cereal production would not be sufficient to cover fully the expected utilization in the 2012/13 marketing season, pointing to a larger drawdown of global cereal stocks than earlier anticipated.

Overview of Salmonella in Livestock and People
Summary of the 2011 edition of 'Salmonella in Livestock Production in GB', an annual publication from the Veterinary Laboratories Agency, providing data on salmonella reports from livestock species in Great Britain (England, Wales and Scotland).

Questions About Corn Acreage
The pace of consumption of US corn has been slowing, as evidenced by small weekly exports and export sales, smaller weekly estimates of ethanol production, declining cattle feedlot placements, and increased slaughter of dairy cows and the hog breeding herd. The extent of rationing required in the current marketing year that has just begun, however, is still not clear since the size of the 2012 crop is not yet known, writes Darrel Good, Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics, University of Illinois.

One Billion Litres of Milk Lost due to Gutworm in 2011
UK - Gutworm could be reducing UK dairy farmers' yields by as much as a billion litres of milk a year, and costing them hundreds of millions of pounds according to new figures released by Merial Animal Health. The calculations, which are based on bulk milk tank tests carried out across UK dairy farms, show that total losses over a three-year period may be as much as £827 million.
Brazil and Peru Added to Growing List of Countries To Provide ZILMAX Registrations
NETHERLANDS - n July and August, MSD Animal Health (known as Merck Animal Health in the U.S. and Canada) received registration for zilpaterol hydrochloride, the active ingredient of ZILMAX®, in two key South America beef producing countries – Brazil and Peru.
Turning the Treatment Mindset Around
US - eping pace with technology can be difficult. But to get the most out of today's antimicrobial treatments, it pays to reevaluate traditional treatment programs, writes ee Bob Harper, DVM, Managing Veterinarian, Pfizer Animal Health, Cattle and Equine Technical Services.

   United Kingdom

SAC Joins Testing Initiative for Schmallenberg Virus
Controlled Badger Cull to Go Ahead in England
Working Together to Eradicate Bovine Tuberculosis
Exploring Options for Surplus Dairy Males
Dairy Crest Suggests Higher Milk Prices this Autumn
Institute for Animal Health becomes Pirbright Institute
Müller/ Wiseman to Increase Milk Price to 29ppl


Farmers Patience with Retailers Runs Out
International Markets Improving, Price Increase Needed


Dairy Industry on Front Foot with Lameness
EMAI Biosecurity Centre Attracts Industry Recognition
Retailers Making Australian Producers Uncompetitive

   New Zealand

Fonterra to Acquire Canterbury Factory
Things Looking Up for NZ Dairy Producers
Wet Weather Management a Priority

   United States

Double-Crop Soybeans Struggle to Mature; Could be Valuable Forage
Industry Urges Senate to Refrain from Disaster Bill
CME: Focus This Month is on Harvested Acres
No Nutritional Benefit to Organic Produce
NFU Kicks Off Legislative Fly-In
Milk Fees Would Skyrocket under Proposed Farm Bill
Drought Conditions Add to Importance of Conservation to Farmers
Farm Bill Now Rally Draws Hundreds of Supporters
Congress Returns, But Farm Bill Unlikely to Reach House Floor


Farms Represent Sources of Environmental Zinc, Copper


Smallholder Dairy Farmers Improve Milk Quality and Profits in Egypt


Spanish Dairy Producers Take to the Streets in Protest

   European Union

EU Cattle Herd to Shrink
Rising Raw Material Costs Threaten Production


Development in Livestock Sector Could Reduce Poverty
Growth Opportunities in the Global Dairy Market
Significant Tightening of Global Grain Supply - Demand Balance Forecast
Global Water Crisis, an Urgent Security Issue
Water - The Threat and the Challenge


Farm Produce Prices Begin to Fall
Further Cases of FMD Confirmed in Tibet


Ukraine Herd Numbers Stabilise


Netherlands Reinforces Position in Innovative Livestock Breeding


Investment Fund Established for Livestock Producers


Livestock Species, Diet Influence Manure Composting Recipes

Events / Promotions

The Drost Project - A Visual Guide to Porcine, Pig Reproduction.
Eurotier 2012
Biomin - Mycotoxins
VIV China 2012

Animax Veterinary Health

Biomin - The Natural Way

CID LINES - Innovative Hygiene Solutions

DNA Landmarks - dedicated to delivering DNA marker services to the agricultural industry

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