Dairy farming is the primary agricultural business in states such as Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Idaho, Vermont and New Hampshire, among others. More than 51,000 dairy farms provide milk, cheese and yogurt to our people as well as those in other countries. About 97% of all dairy farms are family owned, and about 75% of these farms have fewer than 100 cows. Even so, large farming concerns with more than 100 cows produce 85% of our milk. Many of these small and medium-sized family dairy operations are currently experiencing economic hardship. The reasons for this are the increasing costs of producing milk, including feed and transportation, and the low price paid to farmers for the raw milk they send to market. Some say the supply of milk has outpaced its demand. These conditions leave slim margins for dairy farmers and it is estimated they receive only about 30 cents of every retail dollar spent on milk. Dairy farmers are mostly happy with the Agricultural Act of 2014, also known as the farm bill, which addressed many of their concerns. This bill retains the basics of the former Dairy Price Support Program, which takes into account the selling price of milk and the cost of feeding livestock, as the measure by which support for dairy farms is calculated. The bill also allows dairy farmers to purchase margin protection insurance depending on how much protection they need and the amount of milk they produce, with lower premiums for smaller producers.
S.605 – Dairy Income Fairness Act of 2013
I oppose reforming current dairy farm policy and wish to defeat S.605
I support establishing a dairy production margin protection program under which participating dairy operations are paid basic production margin protection program payments when production margins are less than threshold levels; and supplemental production margin protection program payments if purchased by a participating dairy operation, and wish to pass S.605