Dairy group asks Vilsack to define “consensus”

A dairy group is asking Ag Secretary Vilsack to clarify what he needs to move ahead with Federal Milk Marketing Order hearings.

Laurie Fischer with the American Dairy Coalition says the ADC Board of Directors sent a letter to Vilsack asking him to give specific requirements since the board is not sure if the Secretary wants a consensus of stakeholders agreeing to a hearing vetting potential milk pricing proposals or if he wants a consensus of stakeholders agreeing on the same proposal before bringing that to a hearing. “If we go back to the 2018 Farm Bill, there’s a lot of consensus in the industry that it needs to be amended as far as milk pricing formula but we’re not sure if that’s the type of consensus he needs or is asking for.”

Fischer tells Brownfield farmers are concerned about the possible increase in make allowances, or the deductions from the farmer’s milk check used to help cover the cost of processing milk. “It’s very, very important for them to make sure that if something increases for processors that these farmers can also achieve an adequate and transparent milk price for the farmers.”

Fischer says ADC would like to see USDA have their working groups start vetting some of the dairy pricing ideas that have been brought up so the industry can get a jump on a future federal milk marketing order hearing.

Laurie Fischer from American Dairy Coalition discusses dairy pricing issues and the group’s letter to Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack with Brownfield’s Larry Lee 5/31/22

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