Tag Archives: Dairy

The Department of Agriculture Wednesday extended sign-up deadlines for the Dairy Margin Coverage program to December 20. USDA officials cited the prolonged and extensive impacts of weather events this year for moving the deadline beyond its original date of Friday, December 13.

USDA announced it is also continuing to accept applications for the Market Facilitation Program through December 20, 2019. Bill Northey, USDA undersecretary for farm production and conservation, says some farmers are still in the field, adding, “we hope this deadline extension will allow producers the opportunity to participate in these important programs.”

The DMC program offers protection to dairy producers when the difference between the all-milk price and the average feed cost, the margin, falls below a certain dollar amount selected by the producer. The Market Facilitation Program is part of a relief strategy to support farmers while the administration continues to work on trade agreements. Another round of payments could come next month.

The National Milk Producers Federation announced a settlement agreement that would end a class-action lawsuit concerning the Herd Retirement Program that ended back in 2010.

The program was administered through the federation’s Cooperatives Working Together initiative. The settlement will safeguard ongoing efforts to aid U.S. dairy producers, lift a cloud over the industry that’s lasted years, and it allows NMPF member cooperatives and the current CWT program to move forward with more certainty.

The plaintiffs consisted of larger retailers and companies who directly buy butter and cheese from CWT member cooperatives. The settlement amount is $220 million in exchange for a release of all claims. Neither the NMPF nor any of its member cooperatives admit any wrongdoing as a result of the settlement. “There is no way to sugarcoat a settlement of this size, especially given that the Herd Retirement Program was a well-publicized effort designed to serve dairy producers in difficult times,” says Jim Mulhern, President and CEO of the NMPF. “It was praised by two Secretaries of Agriculture and a number of the leading members of Congress.”

The plaintiffs sought damages relating to the Herd Retirement Program, which offered dairy farmers financial incentives to market their milking herds for beef. It operated between 2003 and 2010.

ROSEMONT, Ill. – Ten National Football League (NFL) players will vividly showcase their passion for the farmer-created Fuel Up to Play 60 program during games played on Dec. 8.

The NFL’s “My Cause My Cleats” campaign allows players the opportunity to publicly highlight the causes that are most important to them through personalized designs and messages on their cleats. Ten players, including eight who serve as Fuel Up to Play 60 ambassadors, have chosen to feature their commitment to the program. Fuel Up to Play 60 was created 10 years ago by the dairy checkoff and NFL to improve health and wellness in schools across the country.

“It’s great to see these players put their passion for Fuel Up to Play 60 and children’s health and wellness priorities on full display,” said Pennsylvania dairy farmer Marilyn Hershey, who serves as chair of Dairy Management Inc., which manages the national dairy checkoff. “NFL players and dairy farmers are very united in this cause and our 10-year partnership has delivered healthy change in kids’ lives across the country.”

All 32 NFL teams are involved with Fuel Up to Play 60. Since the program’s inception, more than 2,000 player visits have taken place at schools involved in the program.

“There is nothing more important to our country than dairy farmers … they contribute so much, and we are proud to partner with them,” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said in September.

Players will display Fuel Up to Play 60 messaging and logos or Holstein-patterned prints on their cleats. They will share images of their cleats and information about their cause on their social media channels ahead of the games using the hashtag #mycausemycleats.

The players and their respective Twitter and Instagram handles are:

  • Justin Pugh, Arizona Cardinals (@JustinPugh/@justinpugh67)
  • Nate Ebner, New England Patriots (@nateebner/@ebs43)
  • Justin Simmons, Denver Broncos (@jsimms1119/@jsimms1119)
  • Morgan Moses, Washington Redskins (IG: @morganmoses_76)
  • Matt Breida, San Francisco 49ers (@MattBreida/@mbreida22)
  • DJ Reader, Houston Texans (@djread98/@djread)
  • Harrison Phillips, Buffalo Bills (@horribleharry99/@harrisonphillips99)
  • Jerome Baker, Miami Dolphins (@lastname_baker/@lastname_baker)
  • Mitchell Schwartz, Kansas City Chiefs (@mitchschwartz71/@mitchschwartz71)
  • Dontrell Hilliard, Cleveland Browns (@D_Hilliard26/@d_hilliard26)

The checkoff also will share information via its Twitter and Instagram properties @FUTP60

The NFL is producing television spots that will air during game broadcasts and highlight different players’ causes. The 49ers’ Breida will be included with a message on the importance of youth health and wellness. The spots also be shared across the NFL’s social media channels.

Players will have the opportunity to raise money for their cause by auctioning their cleats off at https://nflauction.nfl.com/. One-hundred percent of money raised will be donated to the player’s charities.

Since its creation, Fuel Up to Play 60 has awarded more than $48 million in grants that have improved school wellness. Many of these efforts have moved more dairy. Schools used grants to implement programs that improved breakfast participation, including providing access to smoothies, coffee and hot chocolate, plus grab-and-go opportunities that allow students to eat in the classroom. Since 2010, efforts such as these have led to an additional 1.2 billion pounds of milk use at schools.

ARLINGTON, Va. – Dairy’s future will depend on its next generation of farmers, many of whom are already hard at work on farms across the country. Young farmers are an important part of the agricultural landscape, and their continued involvement and leadership is needed to preserve a bright future for our dairy cooperatives. Ensuring these farmers can sustain their livelihoods is critical to the future of the dairy industry.


The average age of all U.S. farm producers in 2017 was over 57 years, continuing a long-term trend of aging in the U.S. producer population, according the U.S. Department of Agriculture. That’s in part because younger farmers face unique challenges, said Paul and Nancy Pyle, owners of a 150-cow dairy in Zeeland, Michigan. They’re members of the Michigan Milk Producers Association and chairs of the National Milk Producer Federation’s Young Cooperators Program. They work hard to ensure their milk is wholesome and responsibly-produced, but “it doesn’t matter how good your product is. If you can’t make money selling it, there’s a problem,” Nancy said.


To listen to the full podcast, click here. You can also find the Dairy Defined podcast on SpotifySoundCloud and Google PlayBroadcast outlets may use the MP3 file. Please attribute information to NMPF.


Markets closed early on Friday for the Thanksgiving holiday.   This year’s crop outcome-what will be harvested is about there-this could move the markets higher as reality sets in that all the crop won’t be out before 2020.  How will this change the basis?  Cash will win in the end.  South American production-any issues heading into December.  December 15th deadline looming with China-will they just continue to buy what they need?  Corn exports saw some improvements this past week.   Getting a final spike trade in the dairy industry.  Still seeing some Chinese purchases for milk powder.  Weeks snowstorms and upcoming weekend weather be of concern to the feeder cattle market?

ARLINGTON, VA – The National Milk Producers Federation thanked Senator Tammy Baldwin for her advocacy for public health and labeling transparency in her questions for Dr. Stephen Hahn during today’s hearing on his nomination to be commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.


“As the nation’s top health official, Dr. Hahn would face many challenging issues, labeling integrity high among them. It’s heartening to hear the nominee pledge that an FDA under his leadership will immediately examine this crucial unfinished business,” said Jim Mulhern, president and CEO of NMPF.  “Given his stated commitment to science- and data-based decision-making and his concern for public nutrition, we expect FDA will soon begin enforcing its own standards – which clearly reserve dairy terms for real dairy products, not plant-based imposters who mislead consumers by mislabeling nutritionally inferior products. We thank Senator Baldwin for pressing for urgent action today as part of her ongoing efforts to resolve this health and nutrition issue.”


In response to a question from Sen. Baldwin asking him whether and when the FDA will begin enforcing its own labeling standards, Dr. Hahn voiced his support for “clear, transparent, and understandable labeling for the American people.


“The American people need this so that they can make the appropriate decisions for their health and for their nutrition. I very much will look into this issue,” Dr. Hahn said, later adding he would “look at this as soon as I am confirmed.” Video of Dr. Hahn’s exchange with Sen. Baldwin is here.


The National Milk Producers Federation, which has been speaking out on plant-based imitators for four decades, has been encouraged by recent, long overdue FDA attention to the issue. For more background on NMPF’s position and statements of support from public-health organizations, click here. NMPF also in February released a “road map,” found here, for how the agency can adapt existing standards to reflect the current marketplace and protect labeling integrity.


Hip hip, hooray! It’s the American Farm Bureau’s 100th birthday!

Join Alex and Rebel on this week’s edition of Friday Five, as they discuss trade with China, a major hit to the dairy industry, and more. 



5- Farm Bureau turns 100

4- The Scoop on Ben & Jerry’s 

3- China Hog Herd: Five Year to Bounce Back 

2- China Lifts Five-Year Ban on U.S. Poultry

1- Largest Milk Producer Files Bankruptcy 



NEW ULM, Minn. (Nov. 7, 2019) — The cheesemakers of Associated Milk Producers Inc. (AMPI) are bringing home the coveted Chairman’s Trophy following the National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) Championship Cheese Contest. A hand-crafted Parmesan made at the cooperative’s plant in Hoven, S.D., was named best of class in the Italian division and received the distinction of the contest’s best overall entry.

“Making award-worthy cheese is the daily standard at AMPI,” said Kevin Hageman, a veteran Hard Italian-style cheesemaker who manages the plant where the champion Parmesan was produced. “We don’t make special cheese for contests. This is the quality of product we’re making every day. Our skilled cheesemakers use high-quality milk from AMPI member farms to create superior artisan cheese.”

The South Dakota plant specializes in making 22-pound wheels of Parmesan, Asiago and Romano.

In addition to the competition’s highest recognition, AMPI cheesemakers earned four additional awards at the contest held in conjunction with NMPF’s joint annual meeting with the United Dairy Industry Association and National Dairy Promotion and Research Board in New Orleans, La. A total of 237 entries from cooperatives across the country were submitted for this year’s contest. Cheese made at AMPI plants received the following awards:

First, Processed American Plain – Portage, Wis.
Third, Medium Cheddar – Blair, Wis.
Third, Processed American Plain – Portage, Wis.
Third, Processed American Flavored – Portage, Wis.

“These latest top-three finishes bring AMPI’s total award count in national contests to 21 for 2019,” said Marshall Reece, AMPI’s senior vice president of sales and marketing. “At AMPI, our products come with a Co-op Crafted promise — AMPI family farms care for their land and animals, and partner with skilled craftsmen to make award-winning dairy products for our customers to enjoy.”

Weather in South America.  WASDE report a week away.  How will markets go heading into next week.  China another hold.  Basis harvest pressure heading into the weekend.  Could a soften be happening. What we are seeing in the dollar trade & its effects on the grain & livestock market.  Class 3 milk prices have had some excitement this week.  Vertical move higher in cattle market.  Beef packer margins continue to be strong as does exports.   Smart Money-no selling on this rally-does this mean there is more of a rally to go?  Brazilian Cattle prices.

ROSEMONT, Ill. – Support from dairy checkoff food scientists has helped McDonald’s USA produce a reduced-sugar, low-fat chocolate milk that will be unveiled nationwide in January.


The new formulation has 25 percent less sugar than McDonald’s previous chocolate milk and is no longer a fat-free product.


Dairy Management Inc. (DMI), which manages the national dairy checkoff, has had a partnership with McDonald’s since 2009. DMI provided on-site support from food scientists and other resources and worked closely with the McDonald’s team to create the final product.


“Chocolate milk has been a longtime customer favorite at McDonald’s and U.S. dairy farmers are glad to see the chain roll out a great-tasting chocolate milk that has even more nutritional benefits than previously,” said Pennsylvania dairy farmer Marilyn Hershey, who serves as chair of DMI. “This is a great example of a foodservice leader listening and responding to customer demand. It also benefits dairy farmers because McDonald’s will offer an improved milk product to millions of customers, which could lead to similar changes at other restaurants.”