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Thread: Going off BST

  1. #1
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    Default Going off BST

    For farms that used BST and then stopped what did you change in your management? Did culling strategy change? What about cows that had a poor start from metabolic disorders? We have to be off BST by December 1.

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  2. #2
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    Our co-op had us stop using BST about 10 years ago. I didn't change anything in management. As soon as I got the word we had to go off I stopped starting new cows. I didn't have to cull any more cows in fact I culled less. I believe that BST doesn't work too much on a marginal cow and you screw up a good cow by putting her on it.

    Sure production was down some the first year but the year after that they were milking better than when they were on BST (I think they get immune to it) and no BST bill to pay. I don't miss giving those shots either. I bet a year from December 1 you'll be glad you're off.

  3. #3
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    We had to be off December 1 of last year. Started taking cows off about the middle of May. I can't really say that we changed to much because starting the middle of July we switched to 3x milking. We found that 3x helps keep cull cows milking probably about the same as using bst. Had to become better managers when it comes to fresh cows and make sure any disorders are being caught early on. Otherwise our transition from bst has been a positive one, I'm mostly glad I'm not having to give all the shots! One less day a week the cows don't have to be locked in head locks.


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  4. #4
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    We have to be off Jan 1. Why don't they penalize those who use sexed semen, the milk price will be better for you guys.

    Of course we really don't care about the Jan 1 deadline, odds are we'll be done or close to it. But the answer to getting off BST without loss of milk is probably 3x milking.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by gregorichfarms View Post
    We had to be off December 1 of last year. Started taking cows off about the middle of May. I can't really say that we changed to much because starting the middle of July we switched to 3x milking. We found that 3x helps keep cull cows milking probably about the same as using bst. Had to become better managers when it comes to fresh cows and make sure any disorders are being caught early on. Otherwise our transition from bst has been a positive one, I'm mostly glad I'm not having to give all the shots! One less day a week the cows don't have to be locked in head locks.


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    One less day a week? How often did you give it?

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by BLOOMFIELD View Post
    Our co-op had us stop using BST about 10 years ago. I didn't change anything in management. As soon as I got the word we had to go off I stopped starting new cows. I didn't have to cull any more cows in fact I culled less. I believe that BST doesn't work too much on a marginal cow and you screw up a good cow by putting her on it.

    Sure production was down some the first year but the year after that they were milking better than when they were on BST (I think they get immune to it) and no BST bill to pay. I don't miss giving those shots either. I bet a year from December 1 you'll be glad you're off.
    What does the costing work out at for rBST ?
    "Those people who say they have no time for bodily exercise will soon have to find time for illness ". Joseph Pilates

  7. #7
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    Default Going off BST

    Every 14 days, but we split the herd so we did half the herd each week. Suppose to be so you don't see a fluctuation in milk every two weeks.

    A dose of posilac costed about $6.50. So it costed us about $1500/ month. Now basically that check,plus some, gets wrote out to our employee, and the 12 pounds per cow we've gained since bst is mostly gravy. Other than a little bit of cost for extra electricity and milking supplies.


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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by cousinit View Post
    We have to be off Jan 1. Why don't they penalize those who use sexed semen, the milk price will be better for you guys.

    Of course we really don't care about the Jan 1 deadline, odds are we'll be done or close to it. But the answer to getting off BST without loss of milk is probably 3x milking.
    So Agropur is the reason we have to go off BST. Land o lakes sells milk to them and as long as Agropur didn't flip thier stance on BST we wouldn't have too.

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  9. #9
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    We already milk 3 times a day so does anyone have experience going off and being 3x milking? We did not start any new cows after we got out notice. Since we have a long enough notice the cows we have on will be mostly dry or around 300 days in milk so hopefully going dry.

    One of our neighbors had to go off with 3 months notice earlier this year. They dropped on average 6 pounds of milk on thier 700 cows.

    My fiance said Saputo sent out notice yesterday that all farms have to be off November 1. At this rate Elanco might as well close the doors on the manufacturing of BST.

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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by cousinit View Post
    One less day a week? How often did you give it?
    We are giving our shots every 10 days to keep from dropping milk.

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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lead Cow View Post
    What does the costing work out at for rBST ?
    Hard to pin an exact number because of feed cost always changing but most months we had about a $1,000 dollar profit for the herd of 300 cows. That was using basic numbers saying all cows responded with a 6 pound of milk.

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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by wisjag View Post
    So Agropur is the reason we have to go off BST. Land o lakes sells milk to them and as long as Agropur didn't flip thier stance on BST we wouldn't have too.

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    Our fieldman told us last year that he didnt see any problems coming up using BST & shipping to Agropur. See how long that lasted? They all flip-flop & sleep in the same bed. Meanwhile not paying any extra for not using it. That horse left the barn long ago.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by wisjag View Post
    We are giving our shots every 10 days to keep from dropping milk.

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    Ours never really dropped much & we gave every 14 days. We never got anything in writing yet, did you? We plan on using it till the very end.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by cousinit View Post
    Ours never really dropped much & we gave every 14 days. We never got anything in writing yet, did you? We plan on using it till the very end.


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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by wisjag View Post
    So Agropur is the reason we have to go off BST. Land o lakes sells milk to them and as long as Agropur didn't flip thier stance on BST we wouldn't have too.

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    We also ship to Land O Lakes, but our milk goes directly to Grassland. Grasslands butter contract with the "Golden Arches" is why we had to go bst free last year.


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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by gregorichfarms View Post
    We also ship to Land O Lakes, but our milk goes directly to Grassland. Grasslands butter contract with the "Golden Arches" is why we had to go bst free last year.


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    I'm probably the least consumer-oriented person on here. But think about it. Does anybody who goes to Mickey D's on a regular basis look like they are health conscious.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by cousinit View Post
    I'm probably the least consumer-oriented person on here. But think about it. Does anybody who goes to Mickey D's on a regular basis look like they are health conscious.
    They may not be the most health conscious but they are mothers who are on the internet. Since everything those mothers read on the internet is gospel those mothers will work to sway a corporation. Corporation's that serve food will do what ever it takes to keep a customer. Science does not matter at that point, the profit line is what matters.

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  18. #18
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    People are crazy and there is no accounting for their ideas or how they get them. I bet 80% of women that eat fast food order diet soda. Makes no sense, but it doesn't have to either.

    The BIG corporations have taken notice of this so called Heath trend and you can be sure they will find a way to profit from it. Does anyone really think they give a chit if it makes sense or not?

  19. #19
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    Grassland had us stop by January 1st. We are already 3x.

    Definitely don't go off cold turkey. You'll give back any gains you had by staying on right until the end. I stopped enrolling new cows last summer.

    We've moved our voluntary waiting period up to 50 days from 60 days. Before, we always gave the cows from 60-100 days to show a heat on their own. Now we will give the cows one cycle from ~50-70 days before we will PGF them. No heat off the PGF and we put them in a CIDR sync protocol. I'm a crossbred herd, persistence is not necessarily one of their advantages so getting them pregnant ASAP is important. So far, very few cows are making it to the CIDR sync protocol.

    I'm more willing to cull pregnant cows that drop off too much late lactation. We have plenty of replacements.

    Overall, I won't say we've maintained production but I think over time with some of the adjustments we made I think we can get back to where we were. Just need to reduce those >350 days in milk cows that will tend to fall off a cliff.

  20. #20
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    The soccer moms got lots of stuff eliminated from the grocery shelf but guess what, kids are fatter now than they ever were.

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