In a state losing two dairy farms a day, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said on Tuesday that it’s hard to make a living with a small herd of cows. The “economies of scale having happened in America—big get bigger and small go out,” Perdue said at a dairy show in Wisconsin, in comments …
The Food and Drug Administration held a public meeting Thursday on the safety and labeling of alternative “meat” proteins produced with animal cell culture technology. In a packed room, FDA employees, industry stakeholders, and scientists discussed current trends in the controversial sector, which some imagine could reshape how Americans consume meat. (No paywall)
As NAFTA renegotiations get underway, dairy is shaping up as major sticking point between Canada and the United States. After Canada’s foreign affairs minister insisted on Monday that Canada will defend its tightly controlled approach to its dairy industry, the president of the National Milk Producers Federation accused her of trying to have it both ways on free trade.
In joint comments to the U.S. trade representative’s office, two U.S. dairy groups said they will work with the Trump administration to modernize the North American Free Trade Agreement in hopes of gaining wider access to the Canadian market.
Market research company Mintel says sales of non-dairy milk grew 9 percent in 2015, while dairy milk sales fell 7 percent, the food industry news site Food Dive says. "The non-dairy segment started out as an alternative category catering to those with food allergies but it has since evolved beyond a trend."
Six U.S. farm groups challenged Dannon USA's pledge to switch to non-GMO ingredients in its yogurt as "the exact opposite of the sustainable agriculture you claim to the seeking." The chairman of the National Milk Producers Federation, Randy Mooney, said, "This is just marketing puffery, not any true innovation that improves the actual product offered to consumers."
To bolster milk prices and help keep dairy farmers in business, the USDA should buy up to 90 million pounds of cheese and donate it to food banks, says the National Milk Producers Federation.
The proposal by businessman Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican candidate for president, "to deport undocumented immigrants and wall off the southern U.S. border has created an unexpected bastion of resistance: Dairy farmers," says Bloomberg. "Farmers say they can't get enough relatives or local workers, even with pay starting at $11 an hour or more."
Good times or bad, milk production seems to go only one direction in the United States — up, which it is doing for the third year in a row despite a tumble in market prices. Economist Scott Brown says if the industry is unable to cut output, the only solution to excess milk supplies will be larger domestic and export demand.
The 2014 farm law created a new, insurance-style support program for dairy farmers, based on the difference between milk prices and the cost of feed for milk cows, a so-called margin protection program.
The National Milk Producers Federation board voted to support the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact "containing features that will help America's dairy farmers in the future."
The newly concluded Trans-Pacific Partnership will remove sales barriers from nations that buy $63 billion worth of U.S. farm exports, said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. Almost as soon as accord was announced in Atlanta, completing five years of negotiations, U.S. farm groups focused on its benefits - or lack of them - for Americans.
The government announced a new approach to supporting dairy farmers, with enrollment to begin on Tuesday and conclude on Nov 28.