Dairy farmers welcome the response by the Department of Agriculture to the coronavirus crisis, but say more relief is needed.
The National Milk Producers Federation sent a letter to Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue detailing the needs of dairy farmers during the crisis.
NMPF President and CEO Jim Mulhern says in the letter, “The demand shock experienced by our entire economy is turning what initially looked to dairy farmers like the first decent year in the last five into one of potentially widespread economic devastation.”
Dairy farmers expect to face price declines and unstable demand over the next several months, as joblessness rises, schools remain closed, and farm and dairy processing operations face unprecedented logistical challenges.
In its letter, NMPF said it looks forward to working with the USDA in program implementation, trade facilitation and other areas, but said additional remedies will be needed.
Those include additional dairy product purchases, compensation for milk disposal, and reopening of signup in the Dairy Margin Coverage program.