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UWRF team competes in world dairy expo

October 14, 2021

After almost two years since Marie Haase judged a contest she said, “It felt really good to be back!”

The UWRF Dairy Judging team took a year off due to the pandemic, but they kept the tradition alive this year with traditional contests at Viroqua, WI earlier in September and at World Dairy Expo in Madison on the purple shavings on Sept. 27.  

The UWRF Dairy Judging team competed in the collegiate contest where they placed 10th as team in a competitive contest that invites colleges from across the United States. The contest took approximately 10 hours to complete which included six sets of oral reasons and placing 12 sets of dairy cows which is the most they have ever had to do. This was in part due to more people involved in judging, according to Haase. 

“After a year off, we were a bit rusty, but we came back and made it through,” Haase said.

Their last competition was back in 2019. Dairy judging is identical to a sport with being committed to continuously developing a member’s skills in order to be successful. The team put in many hours before the contest with practices on Wednesdays and Saturdays since the semester began, but Haase wouldn’t trade the experience to judging again in-person.  She has been competitively judging since she was a child. Haase began showing dairy since 5 years old and began dairy judging since she was 10 years old. Now, she is currently serving in many ways of giving back to the dairy industry including the 2021-22 UWRF Dairy Club President. 

 The UWRF Dairy Judging team is filled with successful students with a passion for the dairy industry. They are all currently Seniors at UWRF including Marie Haase, Lacey Nelson, Mikayla Erf, and Colin Wussow and are coached by Mary Holle and Dr. Kelm.  

 Dairy judging consists of placing dairy cattle from highest quality to lowest quality. Team members also present oral reasons which is a two minute prepared speech defending their placing. On a cow, Haase said the largest points on the score card is the udder. Haase said, “That’s where the money is at!” Other parts that are critical to consider when dairy judging is a functional set of legs, longness, and femininity are a few key parts.  

 The team is now looking forward to the North America International Livestock Exposition (NAILE) contest in Louisville, Kentucky during the month November. 

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