June 17 2013 07:38 AM

Resources available on the National Dairy FARM Program YouTube channel have been viewed 300,000 times since 2010.

The National Dairy FARM (Farmers Assuring Responsible Management) Program's YouTube channel surpassed the 300,000 views mark last week. The program continues to gain popularity, and the channel reached this milestone less than three years after its July 15, 2010, launch.

The YouTube channel contains videos that summarize each chapter of their FARM Animal Care Manual in both English and Spanish. There are also videos on locomotion, hygiene, body condition and hock lesion scoring, again in English and Spanish.

These resources can be found at: www.youtube.com/user/NationalDairyFARM/about.

The National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) started the National Dairy FARM Program in 2009 as a way to provide a consistent, national, verifiable means of showing consumers how animals are cared for and how dairy foods are produced. Today, 70 percent of the nation's milk comes from farms that participate in the program.

Not familiar with the National Dairy FARM Program? Read more in our "Are you F.A.R.M.ing?" blog from September 12, 2012. (www.hoards.com/blog_FARMing)

One part of the program is second-party evaluations conducted on participating farms. An analysis of last year's evaluations was done, and NMPF shared the results in their "National Dairy FARM Program: 2012 Year in Review" report. In some areas, nearly all farms were hitting the mark and adopting the best practices from the FARM Animal Care Manual. In any case, the National Dairy FARM Program advocates for continuous improvement in animal care on all farms.

The following are some of the best practices and the percent of evaluated farms that had adopted them as of June 2012:

Daily animal observations - 99.2 percent
Calf handling - 99.0 percent
Nonambulatory animals movement training - 95.5 percent
Herd health plan - 93.1 percent
Euthanasia protocols - 92.3 percent
Animal care standard operating procedure - 85.2 percent
Annual training for new and existing personnel - 82.8 percent
Painful procedure management - 81.7 percent
Veterinary client/patient relationship - 80.2 percent
Emergency plan - 72.7 percent
Calf naval dipping - 68.0 percent
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The author is an associate editor and covers animal health, dairy housing and equipment, and nutrient management. She grew up on a dairy farm near Plymouth, Wis., and previously served as a University of Wisconsin agricultural extension agent. She received a master's degree from North Carolina State University and a bachelor's from University of Wisconsin-Madison.