WASHINGTON, D.C. (PRNewswire) — Jerry Slominski, senior vice president for legislative and economic affairs at the International Dairy Foods Association, issued the following statement on the House Agriculture Committee Chairman's mark of the 2012 Farm Bill. The bill includes a dairy market stabilization program, first introduced in H.R. 3062, the Dairy Security Act, by Rep. Collin Peterson (D-MN), which will raise consumer prices, hurt exports, cost thousands of new jobs and stifle investments in new facilities.
"IDFA is disappointed that the Dairy Market Stabilization Program has been included in the House Agriculture Committee Chairman's Mark of the Farm Bill. The stabilization program is designed to limit milk supplies and to periodically raise milk prices. It will reduce dairy farmers' incomes at the same time that a new subsidized revenue insurance plan enhances their incomes. Taxpayer organizations, consumer groups, dairy food manufacturers, and many dairy producers — including the second largest dairy coop in the country — have all spoken out against supply management programs like the DMSP.
The stabilization program will hamstring a growing dairy export business, discourage investment into processing facilities and ultimately hurt new or expanding dairy farms by limiting increased demand for more milk production.
IDFA urges the committee to provide revenue or margin insurance for dairy farmers without also mandating that they participate in a program that will impose government control over the supply and demand for milk. Such an approach will help dairy farmers through difficult years, yet allow our dairy industry to continue to expand, creating jobs and helping our economy. "
The International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA), headquartered in Washington, D.C., represents the nation's dairy manufacturing and marketing industries and their suppliers, with a membership of 550 companies representing a $110-billion a year industry. IDFA is composed of three constituent organizations: the Milk Industry Foundation (MIF), the National Cheese Institute (NCI) and the International Ice Cream Association (IICA). IDFA's 220 dairy processing members run more than 600 plant operations, and range from large multi-national organizations to single-plant companies. Together they represent more than 85% of the milk, cultured products, cheese and frozen desserts produced and marketed in the United States. IDFA can be found online at www.idfa.org.