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Green County herds honored for milk quality
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MONROE - The top Green County dairy herds will be recognized at the upcoming Annual Green County DHI Membership Luncheon for producing high quality milk based on their somatic cell count levels.

Production of high-quality milk is dependent upon maintaining excellent hygienic standards. Somatic cell counts are actually a count of the number of white blood cells present in a cow's udder. Since white blood cells are used by the cow's immune system to fight infections, a low number of these cells in the cow's milk is an indicator of healthy and infection-free udders and higher quality milk. Conversely, a high SCC number indicates that at least one or more quarters in the udder has an infection. Dairy operations must be able to meet the task every day of producing a high-quality product. The Green County average SCC for all DHI herds on test in 2016 was 228,000 cells per milliliter.

The top three DHI herds in both the small herd category and the large herd category are being recognized for having the lowest herd linear score somatic cells counts for Green County dairy herds in 2016. The top three herds are presented with certificates and the top herd in each size category also receives a large aluminum milk house sign sponsored by the Green County Milk Quality Council.

Top honors in the small herd category (99 cows or less) went to High Road Dairy operated by Kim and Nick Hartwig of Monroe. They milk 74 cows and had a weighted SCC of 88,000/milliliter and a linear score of 1.5. Second place in the small herd division went to Shantell Holsteins, Monroe, and third place to Rock-N Hill Holsteins, Juda.

Gaining top honors in the large herd division (100 cows or more) was Binders Holstein and Brown Swiss of Monticello. Its herd of 143 cows had a weighted average SCC of 56,000/milliliter and a linear score of 1.3 for 2016. Second place in the large herd division went to went to Jeff and Kate Hendrickson, Belleville, and third place went to Dave and Brian Brugger, Monroe.