Feb. 7 2023 03:57 PM

The 2009 NMC president spent his career in the milking systems industry

The information below has been supplied by dairy marketers and other industry organizations. It has not been edited, verified or endorsed by Hoard’s Dairyman.

Norm Schuring, Elgin, Ill., received the National Mastitis Council’s (NMC) Award of Excellence for Contribution to Mastitis Prevention and Control. The 2009 NMC president, Schuring served as vice president, Farm of the Future; and vice president, dealer and industry relations for GEA Farm Technologies, Inc. before his retirement.

This award recognizes an NMC member who has provided sustained contributions to mastitis prevention and control through research, extension and/or education, clinical practice or service to dairy producers. Boehringer Ingelheim sponsors the award and presented Reid with a $2,500 honorarium.

Raised on a dairy farm in northern Illinois, which included 120 cows milked in tie-stall barn, Schuring started his career with Babson Bros. (SURGE) in 1970, later became GEA Farm Technologies. He carried out a variety of work responsibilities, including managing technical support to dealers and customers, managing warranty policies and procedures, conducting training and establishing training programs, carrying out industry relations and defining research projects.

In addition to his service on the NMC board of directors, Schuring chaired the NMC Machine Milking Committee and chaired the Milking Machine Manufacturers Council of the Association of Equipment Manufacturers.

Schuring authored “Milking Intelligence” in 2016, a holistic guide to optimal cow milking. Available in English, Spanish, French, German, Portuguese and Chinese, the book’s objective is to help dairy farmers around the world achieve the most successful milk harvest process in an efficient, sustainable and profitable way. Schuring stresses the importance of training and education as a way to maximize milk quality and cow comfort

In support of Schuring’s nomination, Douglas Reinemann, University of Wisconsin professor of biological system engineering and associate dean for extension and outreach, wrote, “Norm has been a supporter and guiding light to me, and I feel safe in saying, many, many others working in the areas of milking machines and milk quality research, extension and practice. He was one of the first industry professionals to reach out to me as a new faculty member to help me understand the research and educational needs of the industry and NMC. His guidance had a profound effect on the course of my career and programs developed through the UW Milking Research and Instruction Lab.”

Another, another past NMC president and NMC Award of Excellence recipient had this to say about Schuring. “Norm has been a huge contributor to NMC and the dairy industry. Norm played an important role with Graeme Mein and me in writing the “NMC Procedures for Evaluating Vacuum Levels and Airflow in Milking Systems book. Norm was selfless when it came to helping educate people on how to help dairies produce better quality milk. He never tried to hide the ‘secrets’ of GEA products and equipment, but instead gave us straight and useful information.”

GEA colleague Robin Matthayasack praised Schuring for his dedication to ensuring that milking machine mechanics harvest milk properly from cows so that their health is protected and dairy producers market milk of the highest quality. “Norm always puts the cow first, whether his job was working with new product development, educating our dealer network or working with colleagues and research specialists on setting industry standards.”

Another GEA co-worker – Keith Engel – praised Schuring for his outstanding teaching capabilities. Engel remarked, “Norm has been a mentor to many milk quality and milk harvest enthusiasts all over the world. He has taught so many people about making a difference in milk quality through his passion and involvement from areas of research and development, technical support, industry relations and training. Norm showed leadership by serving others – stressing that things need to be done so that milk quality and cow comfort are never jeopardized.”

National Mastitis Council is a professional organization devoted to reducing mastitis and enhancing milk quality. NMC promotes research and provides information to the dairy industry on udder health, milking management, milk quality and milk safety. Founded in 1961, NMC has about 1,000 members in more than 40 countries throughout the world.