dairy

‘Stay tuned,’ says Vilsack as dairy demands retaliatory tariffs

The United States was "greatly disappointed" by Canada's refusal to allow larger imports of U.S. dairy products despite a USMCA trade ruling, said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack on Monday. Vilsack expressed solidarity with U.S. dairy groups that called for retaliatory tariffs on Canadian goods, telling reporters, "Stay tuned."

USDA closes loopholes on origin of organic dairy livestock

After years of lobbying by organic farmers, the Agriculture Department tightened its rules on how dairy animals — cattle, goats and sheep — enter organic production, in the name of fairness to farmers and consumers. The new “origin of livestock” rule would end the practice of cycling dairy …

Canadian dairy quotas violate USMCA terms, dispute panel rules

In the first decision under the new North America trade pact, a three-judge dispute settlement panel ruled that Canada had manipulated its tariff-rate quotas to limit imports of U.S. dairy products, despite agreeing to greater U.S. access in the 2020 agreement. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said the ruling was a signal of U.S. resolve against unjustified trade restrictions anywhere.

Farmers, advocates concerned about Vilsack’s record on dairy issues

Some dairy farmers and advocates are worried that president-elect Joe Biden's pick for agriculture secretary, Tom Vilsack, will do little to address their concerns about issues like consolidation, farm bankruptcies and low milk prices. Critics are especially concerned about how Vilsack’s years running a dairy industry trade group will affect his policymaking approach.(No paywall)

Stung by coronavirus, producers ask government to buy their goods

The government should step up its food purchases as a way to mitigate the potential loss of billions of dollars in sales due to the coronavirus pandemic, said dairy farmers and two dozen lawmakers representing fruit and vegetable growers. And a small-farm advocacy group estimated a three-month …

Burdened by debt, Borden files for bankruptcy reorganization

Once the world's largest dairy operator, Borden Dairy said it filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization, aiming to reduce its debt load "and position the company for long-term success." The bankruptcy filing over the weekend in Delaware courts followed the November bankruptcy of Dean Foods, one of the largest U.S. milk processors.

In Oregon, a failed mega-dairy spurs call for CAFO moratorium

The troubled tenure of Lost Valley Farm in Boardman, Oregon, a mega-dairy that housed 15,000 cows, has sparked calls for reform of the permitting process for such operations. Some farm and environmental advocates want the state to pass a bill that would issue a moratorium on new mega-dairies, …

Family farming on a precipice, Wisconsin farmers warn

Corporate consolidation and low commodity prices are posing an existential threat to small, family farms, farmers warned at an event hosted by the Wisconsin Farmers Union in Madison last week. Several producers, from small organic growers to commodity milk farmers, shared stories about how tough farming has become.

FDA on ‘fast track’ to assess labeling of non-dairy milks

The Food and Drug Administration announced on Thursday that it is moving ahead on modernizing its standards of identity for plant-based dairy alternatives, like soy and almond milks.

Food companies and farmers active at Climate Action Summit

If the Trump administration’s effort to stymie action on climate change is having an impact on food and farming, it isn’t apparent at the Global Climate Action Summit underway in San Francisco this week. (No paywall)

Canada needs ‘flexibility’ on dairy in NAFTA bargaining, says Mulroney

Amid rumors that Canada will offer concessions on dairy trade, former prime minister Brian Mulroney said he would be surprised if the new NAFTA did not include "flexibility" on the country's supply management system. Agriculture is a small part of NAFTA trade but it is a stubborn impediment in U.S.-Canada negotiations.

Report on organic dairy highlights consolidation, industrialization

A new report from the Cornucopia Institute updates the group’s earlier research on the continuing industrialization of the organic dairy industry. The report includes a consumer scorecard that ranks commercially available dairy products on such metrics as whether the cows have access to pasture, what they’re fed, and whether they’re raised on industrial farms.

Continuing dairy crisis shuts down well-known New Hampshire farmer

Amid an ongoing dairy crisis, the former commissioner of agriculture for New Hampshire is closing his 48-year-old dairy farm in Meriden. While Steve Taylor will no longer produce milk, he will continue to make cheese and maple products.

As milk prices stay low, a call for drastic dairy reform

More than fifty rural, agriculture, and labor organizations signed onto a letter demanding that Congress and the Department of Agriculture do more to support dairy farmers as low prices continue to threaten small and mid-size dairies across the country. The organizations include the National Family Farm Coalition, the Food Chain Workers Alliance, the Rural Coalition, Pesticide Action Network North America, and many others.

As a dairy scandal settles, a fight in Oregon about the future of farming

A scandal involving Lost Valley, Oregon’s second-largest dairy, illuminates a broader debate in the state: whether or not it should welcome more industrial, large-scale farming operations, and particularly large-scale dairies. No paywall

While U.S. dairy farmers face a bleak market, their Canadian counterparts thrive

Dairy farmers in Canada are paid about $24 per hundred pounds of milk, nearly $10 more than their American counterparts, who may live mere miles to the south.

Perdue opens enrollment for ‘new and improved’ dairy insurance program

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue announced Tuesday that enrollment is now open for the “new and improved” Dairy Margins Protection Program, a dairy insurance program run by USDA. The program has a poor reputation among many dairy farmers, who believe funds from an earlier iteration of the program were misallocated. No paywall

USDA to establish milk-marketing order in California

USDA announced Friday that it will likely establish a Federal Milk Marketing Order for the state of California. The agency will have a referendum for California dairy producers from April 2 to May 5, during which two-thirds of producers have to vote in favor of the FMMO for it to become official.

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