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Pasture-Based Dairy and Livestock Seminar

Start date: 30-05-2020

End date: 30-05-2020

Organised by: Wisconsin School for Beginning Dairy and Livestock Farmers (WSBDF)


  • Livestock


Cost: USD 300


The course is set up to help you succeed in your dairy or livestock business, and it allows you the flexibility to move through the materials where you want, when you want, and at your own pace.


Each topic has its own web page which includes background information on the speaker and topic, a video of the speaker’s presentation, a PDF of the speaker’s presentation, and links to additional information and useful resources related to the topic. 

For students who want to receive a certificate of completion, each term ends with an exam that can be completed online and submitted to the instructors for review. In addition to the terms and topics outlined below, the course also includes the option for students to develop a business plan using tools, templates, and tips provided by WSBDF.


Pasture-Based Dairy and Livestock Seminar Outline 

Term I – Business Startup 

  • Topic 1 – Principles and Opportunities for Starting a Dairy or Livestock Business 
  • Topic 2 – Successful Dairy Farm Startup 
  • Topic 3 – Setting Realistic Goals for your Start-up Farm Business 
  • Topic 4 – The GrassWorks Inc Dairy Grazing Apprenticeship Program 
  • Topic 5 – Sheep Production and Marketing 
  • Topic 6 – Basics of Goat Business Startups 
  • Topic 7 – Feeding the Dairy Cow on Pasture: Part 1 
  • Topic 8 – Feeding the Dairy Cow on Pasture: Part 2 
  • Topic 9 – Farm Selection and Grazing System Layout 
  • Topic 10 – Stray Voltage and Infrastructure Considerations 
  • Topic 11 – Pasture-Based Beef Production 
  • Topic 12 – Niche Markets for Beef 
  • Term I Exam 

Term II – Developing a Business Plan 

  • Topic 1 – USDA FSA Beginning Farmer Loan Opportunities 
  • Topic 2 – Farm Startup Financial Record Keeping 
  • Topic 3 – Farmer-driven Marketing Strategies: Local and Grass-fed 
  • Topic 4 – Locker Plant Logistics 
  • Topic 5 – Shifting Gears: Managing Agriculture’s New Realities 
  • Topic 6 – Farm Business Start-up Lessons Learned 
  • Term II Exam 

Term III – Managing the Business 

  • Topic 1 – Low Cost Milking Parlor Design Part 1 
  • Topic 2 – Low Cost Milking Parlor Design Part 2 
  • Topic 3 – Livestock Health and Treating Disease in Organic Systems 
  • Topic 4 – Principles of Organic Dairying and Herd Health from a Farmer’s Perspective 
  • Topic 5 – Pasture and Soil Nutrient Management 
  • Topic 6 – Grazing and Natural Resource Management 
  • Topic 7 – Emerging Markets and Value Added Food Products 
  • Topic 8 – Ecological Restoration with Livestock 
  • Topic 9 – Bringing it All Together 
  • Term III Exam
More information