Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin Podcast: Proudly Wisconsin Badge

Kirk Scott, Senior Vice President of Dairy Company Communications for the Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin discusses the communications and efforts with dairy processors to increase visibility, distribution, trial and sales, and to increase affinity for Wisconsin dairy products which in turn grows demand for Wisconsin milk.

  • How are these trends helping the small family dairy farmers of Wisconsin? The fact that cheese continues to be a successful product, and yet the family farms throughout the state have been and are being decimated, can only mean that the processors and stores are taking most of the profits. They are biting the hands that feed them. How are these dairy farmers supposed to survive? From what I can tell, the corporate farms are destroying the family farms, meaning that the small farms can’t compete. This is so wrong, not only for these farmers, but also for the consumers. Milk is not just milk. There is quality to consider, and by and large the smaller herds on pasture produce a much healthier and tastier product. There are also ethical and environmental factors: small farms treat their cows much better by letting them enjoy the outdoors and the healthier diet. And as we all know, the large farms are much more likely to pollute the water, upsetting the ecology of the region. Federal milk orders have also benefited farms with a greater output. I don’t know if this will continue with the Vilsack and Biden administration, but it will be slow and probably too late for many of our small farms.

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