Dairy Industry Support Requested

Dairy Industry Support Requested

Without help many dairy farmers will be forced out.

Tuesday, the House Agriculture Subcommittee on Livestock, Dairy, and Poultry held the second of three scheduled hearings this month to review the economic conditions facing the dairy industry. Subcommittee Chairman David Scott, D-Ga. noted that as was evidenced by last week's hearing, there is no shortage of opinions regarding the causes of this current crisis, and as such, naturally there is a wide range of views on what needs to be done to remedy the state of affairs.


"It is imperative that we use these hearings to develop some consensus on a way forward," Scott said.


Carver County Minnesota Farmers Union President Scott Hoese told the Subcommittee that as a dairy farmer the current situation is unlike any experienced in the past and the width and depth cannot continue to be ignored. He said the rollercoaster market dairy producers have been riding becomes more severe with each passing year, with the highs not lasting long enough to mitigate the lows, and dairy farmers need a lifeline now.


Hoese cited three principles agreed to by producers that would strengthen the dairy industry. They are: return on investment greater than cost of production, plus a profit from the market; reform of the Federal Milk Marketing Order system; and restoring competition to the dairy market. Hoese said unless Congress and the Administration extend a lifeline proportional to today's crisis, there will be little need to overhaul policy because so many producers will be forced out of business.

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