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Industry News

Read coverage of current events and news affecting dairy producers and the industry.

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Despite challenges with late spring planting and hay harvest, dairy producers are signing up for the Dairy Margin Coverage (DMC) program in high numbers, according to Bill Northey, USDA undersecretary for farm production and conservation. DMC enrollment began at local USDA Farm Service Agency offices on June 17.

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With forage supplies generally tight, dairy and other livestock farmers may be looking for late planting options with the hopes of building feed inventories before next winter. Recent federal policy changes make planting harvestable cover crops – including corn silage – on prevented plant acreage possible, but producers should review crop insurance policies and deadlines to maximize economic returns. States and geographies have different late planting and prevent plant deadlines under the federal crop insurance program.

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Members of St. Albans Cooperative Creamery will meet in late July to vote on a possible merger with Dairy Farmers of America (DFA). St. Albans’ board of directors voted unanimously to recommend the merger, providing some details at an informational meeting on June 24.

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The July 2019 Federal Milk Marketing Order (FMMO) Class I base price is $17.18 per hundredweight (cwt), the highest level since January 2017. It is up 11 cents from June 2019 and $1.82 more than July 2018. Through the first seven months of 2019, the Class I base price is $16.12 per cwt, up about $1.52 compared to the same period a year ago.

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The USDA’s Risk Management Agency (RMA) is providing dairy producers and others with additional flexibility in harvesting cover crops to help meet their 2019 forage needs. Under the special provisions announced June 20, producers can hay, graze or cut cover crops for silage, haylage or baleage on “prevented plant” acres on or after Sept. 1 and still remain eligible for 100% of their prevented planting federal crop insurance payments.

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