The National Milk Producers Federation, the largest dairy organization in the U.S., as well as the International Dairy Foods Association, came together to ask for help.
They sent a request for assistance to Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue. Jim Mulhern, President and CEO of NMPF, says, “As most of the country shelters in place and large swaths of the foodservice sector come to a standstill, dairy sales outside the retail channels have plummeted. Market prices have dropped rapidly, which has created a crushing economic outlook for producers of nutritious and necessary milk and dairy products.”
The groups say no plan will fully remedy the losses; however, dairy is responding with a united plan that can help mitigate the damage caused by COVID-19.
“Dairy industry discussions have led to a comprehensive action plan to address many of the key marketplace challenges created by the pandemic and we will present it to USDA,” Mulhern adds. “We understand the demands that USDA is under, but after five straight years of poor milk prices, they were just starting to rebound when the pandemic hit.”
He says immediate actions by USDA are critical to helping people survive the market devastation that has occurred.