Providing dairy workers with formal safety training is not typically an easy task. Workers are on tight schedules, training resources are scarce, and language barriers exist.

The Idaho Dairymen’s Association (IDA) recognized the need for concise, comprehensive safety training materials and developed new, dairy-specific Tailgate Talks to help producers train the dairy workforce.

What are Tailgate Talks?
Tailgate Talks are manager-led safety discussions designed to last roughly 5 to 10 minutes. Each discussion focuses on a topic included in the Dairy Dozen. The Dairy Dozen encompass OSHA’s primary focus areas for Local Emphasis Program (LEP) inspections on dairy farms.

Each Tailgate Talk includes a one-page manager script, a coordinating break room poster, and a sign-in sheet. The combination of these components is effective for learning, reinforcement, and documentation.

The manager scripts are designed to help facilitators and participants identify specific hazards on the dairy where they work. Sections providing training points and key takeaways highlight best practices and hazards, while discussion questions catch workers’ attention and make the training relatable.

Over the last three years, IDA has spent a significant amount of time facilitating its Dairy Worker Training and Safety Program. One of the major lessons learned is that workers have an easier time understanding and remembering training content when visual illustrations are shown. Using the accompanying break room poster as a visual aid during and after the training makes a big difference in worker comprehension.

Tailgate Talk Kits
To make the training process a little easier for dairies, Tailgate Talk Kits are available to order!

Each kit includes a manager script booklet, a notepad of 50 sign-in sheets, and a complete set of break room posters. The booklet includes every manager script in English and Spanish, while sign-in sheets and posters can be ordered in either English or Spanish.

Tailgate Talk Kits can be ordered at beginning January 2021.

IDA trusts that this resource will be beneficial in protecting and educating the dairy workforce.

For more information about Tailgate Talks, please contact Ellissa Clark at

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(c) Hoard's Dairyman Intel 2020
November 23, 2020
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