Transitioning Organic Dairy Cows Off and On Pasture Webinar

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The slides from this webinar are available at the following link as a pdf file:

Resources Mentioned in the Webinar

eOrganic Articles

NRAES Publications

Additional Resources:

About the Webinar

One challenge with grazing the organic dairy herd is helping cows adjust to a new feed source in both the fall and spring. The switch from high-quality pasture to lower-quality stored feeds can be tricky—if the change is made too quickly, milk production can drop until the cows and their rumen microbes become accustomed to the new feed. In this webinar, Rick Kersbergen will provide an overview of rumen function and various rations. He will address the nutritional qualities of various homegrown feeds (including grains), what they can add to a cow’s diet, and the potential for milk production trade-offs.

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About the Presenter

Rick Kersbergen is an Extension Professor at the University of Maine Cooperative Extension. Rick has been conducting research and extension programs related to sustainable dairy and forage systems since 1987. He is currently involved with several multi-state, applied research projects on cover crops, organic grains production, and forage and nutrient management. He is past chair of the Northeast Pasture Consortium and manages the regional website as a compendium of grazing information for the region.

About eOrganic

eOrganic is the Organic Agriculture Community of Practice at Our website  at contains articles, videos, and webinars for farmers, ranchers, agricultural professionals, certifiers, researchers and educators seeking reliable information on organic agriculture, published research results, farmer experiences, and certification. The content is collaboratively authored and reviewed by our community of University researchers and Extension personnel, agricultural professionals, farmers, and certifiers with experience and expertise in organic agriculture.

Published November 9, 2010

This is an eOrganic article and was reviewed for compliance with National Organic Program regulations by members of the eOrganic community. Always check with your organic certification agency before adopting new practices or using new materials. For more information, refer to eOrganic's articles on organic certification.