October 20, 2005

Romanian Farmers Visit Local Dairy As Part of USDA Tour

Typical visitors to the United States from Europe list the Statue of Liberty, Washington D.C. and the Hollywood Walk of Fame as must see sites.

Recently five men from Romania set off on their whirlwind tour of the U.S. hitting such infamous places as the Phillip Brubaker dairy farm in Memphis. The group consisted of farmers and livestock producers from the European nation taking part in a three-week tour of a variety of beef and dairy operations across the Midwest.

Bruce Lane led excursion sponsored by the United States Department of Agriculture.

“These men are all important in their industry in their own way,” Lane said. “We are offering them an overview of our beef and dairy industries while offering them the opportunity to make local contacts with the goal of expanding future trade opportunities.”

Lane took the Romanian producers to the World Dairy Expo in Madison, WI, for the first four days of their U.S. Tour.

On the way south the group stopped off at the Northern Iowa Community College to view the school’s new dairy training system for both confinement and new grazing operations.

In Memphis the five guests from Romania received the complete tour of the Brubaker Dairy, learning about calving routines, feed varieties and the overall set-up of the confinement. The men were able to ask numerous questions and take photographs of points of interest.

After leaving Memphis, Lane stated they will travel to the University of Missouri in Columbia to visit the ag school. In between they will see a number of pure-bred cattle operations.

The Romanian producers indicated the were very interested in the dairy aspects since most of their cattle are dual purpose animals, raised for both milk and beef, but not nearly as productive as U.S. dairy cows.

The Europeans were also interested in cattle genetics and learning more about higher producing beef cattle.

Lane stated the visitors would tour numerous livestock operations from small to large before ending the trip at the American Royal.

“This is a nice opportunity for all involved,” Lane said. “It’s a two-way street as not only are our guests learning about our agriculture, but we are also getting a chance to learn from them.”

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