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TAD and Mother Nature: Moving forward into the spring

By Darren Turley
TAD Executive Director

It seems like Winter Storm Uri was so long ago now that spring has turned the landscape bright green. Mother Nature has done what it always does in Texas, moving forward and leaving the past behind.

But even as the bluebonnets and wildflowers bloom, the impact of that historic winter storm is ongoing. Broken supply chains for so many products have disrupted the ability to purchase construction materials and delayed many other items.

The dairy industry can’t allow supply chain breakdowns – such as those we saw during Winter Storm Uri – to derail our business. Cows must be milked, and we have to be able to quickly overcome any issues in order to get our perishable product to consumers. During the storm, our industry came together to keep the process from farm to grocery shelf moving. It took a lot of hard work on so many different levels, and I personally believe it looked too easy to the general public!

Our industry has a great work ethic throughout the production process. Seeing how hard dairy farmers work inspires others in the industry to work hard to support them. We all have a task to do in order to move the dairy industry forward.

TAD at work for you in Austin and with the industry

The task of the Texas Association of Dairymen is to represent and protect dairy farmers at the Capitol. We’re now in the middle of a legislative session that began Jan. 12 and ends May 31. Because of the pandemic, when the session started no one knew if we would be able to testify or visit legislators in person. Now we are back to a more normal process, but very few people are traveling to Austin to visit the Capitol. The pace is increasing as the scramble is on to get bills heard and passed before session ends. You can find the latest news from the Capitol from our governmental relations team update in this newsletter.

TAD is also visiting with Texas Commission of Environmental Quality staff to address several issues. This month we have discussed on-farm milk disposal, the Bosque Total Maximum Daily Load rules, inspection activities and lagoon closing options. And, of course, the ongoing manure digestor discussion with companies that want to access your farms to share their plan to market your methane gas.

TAD also works with college researchers to promote projects that have the potential to help farms in the future. Industry support is crucial so these projects can receive grant funding to continue to answer some tough questions about new advancements for our industry.

State Rep. Steve Toth from Spring, just north of Houston, who serves on the House Agriculture Committee, worked on a dairy farm as a kid. He has said the hardest working people are dairy farmers. I couldn’t agree more! You set a great example of striving every day to work hard and continue to be great representatives for the dairy industry. The Texas Association of Dairymen is proud to work for you!

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