June 14, 2019: Dairy Margin Coverage Enrollment

June 17, 2019 is the first day to enroll in the Dairy Margin Coverage (DMC) program. Dairy Margin Coverage is the 2018 Farm Bill program that replaces the Margin Protection Plan (MPP). Looking back at MPP, at the highest margin coverage ($8.00/cwt), it would have paid out 8 months in 2015 and 4 months in…

June 7, 2019: Class I Price Formula Change

For many years, the USDA has been using a formula to calculate the Class I (fluid milk) price based on the higher price between the Advance Class III (cheese) and Advance Class IV (butter and powder) price plus a location differential. This was beneficial to the dairy farmer, but made it especially difficult for fluid…

May 31, 2019: May

May has been a busy month for the U,S. dairy industry. We have seen improvement in Class III and IV futures prices. Significant progress has also been made in trade, with the U.S. lifting aluminum and steel tariffs and the subsequent lifting of Mexico’s and Canada’s countermeasures. This will allow dairy trade to resume at pre-tariff NAFTA rules. The…

May 24, 2019: Trade Agreements and Tariffs

Trade policy, tariffs and retaliatory tariffs have been a hot topic at dairy industry meetings I have attended in recent months. Last year, exports reached a record volume at nearly 16% of national milk production on a total milk solids basis. However, this has been overshadowed by a U.S. dairy industry that has been struggling…