Dairy Leaders Invited to Weigh in on Regional Federal Milk Marketing Orders

09:32PM Jul 29, 2015
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Cooperative Network, the statewide association for cooperative businesses in Minnesota and Wisconsin, is hosting the Federal Milk Marketing Orders Forum, Sept. 24, 2015, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., at the DoubleTree Hotel in Bloomington, Minnesota. The event is intended to bring together dairy industry leaders to examine the Upper Midwest’s current system and to discuss potential changes to the rules under which processors purchase fresh milk from dairy farmers. Media are invited to attend.

Several dairy cooperatives operating in California have petitioned the U.S. Department of Agriculture to allow the state’s milk producers to operate under a federal milk marketing order rather than the state’s milk pricing system. Cooperative Network believes this action could open the door for additional reforms to the national system and that the Upper Midwest region should be prepared.

“With California’s recent petition and 2016 being an election year, we think there’s a good chance the federal milk marketing orders could soon be open to broader reform,” said David Ward, Cooperative Network director of government relations, who manages the association’s dairy program. “We want to be sure our milk producers and processors in the Upper Midwest proactively examine the current system and have the opportunity to offer their input to guide any future changes.”

The forum agenda features several national and regional dairy economists who will walk through the application of federal milk marketing orders in the Upper Midwest, how the system works for other regions, what the addition of a California order could mean, and the process for changing federal orders. The forum will conclude with a panel discussion of dairy cooperative leaders who will react to and analyze the day’s information.

Agenda and registration information are online at bit.ly/2015FederalMilkMarketingOrderForum. Registration fees are $225 for Cooperative Network members and $325 for nonmembers through Aug. 31, 2015. Contact Wendy Fassbind, Cooperative Network director of meetings and events, [email protected] or (608) 258-4401, to register as media.

Source: Cooperative Network