By Jim Dickrell, editor, Dairy Today
Rep. Jim Costa (D-Calif.) introduced the Dairy Price Stabilization Act to Congress this afternoon.
Under the program, dairies can choose to maintain current production (plus an allowable year-over-year growth rate based on market conditions) or expand. If they expand, they would pay a fee during the first year of expansion which would be shared with farmers not expanding.
A 24- member board of directors, including producers, processors and consumers, would be established to advise the Secretary of Agriculture on any necessary adjustments to program operations. In addition, the bill requires a vote by farmers to enact the program, and after three years after it starts, whether to continue it.
"We have a real opportunity to make meaningful changes to prevent future dairy crashes like the one we're in now,” says Costa. "Protecting the livelihoods of our dairy families is critical to promoting a full recovery and the nation's access to healthy dairy products.”
The bill is co-sponsored by Reps. Peter Welch (D-Vt.), Joe Courtney, (D-Conn.) Rick Larsen (D-Wash.) and John B. Larson (D-Conn.).
For a copy of the bill, click here.
View a video of Congressman Costa speaking on the floor of the House of Representatives today in support of the Dairy Price Stabilization Act.