Agriculture Secretary, Tom Vilsack, recently announced that approximately $11.2 million will be available in financial assistance to dairy producers that are enrolled in the 2016 Margin Protection Program for Dairy (MPP-Dairy). This is the largest payment rate since MPP-Dairy began in 2014. The margin between milk prices and the cost of feed is narrowing, triggering these payments.
Tom Vilsack stated, “We understand the nation’s dairy producers are experiencing challenges due to market conditions. MPP-Dairy payments are part of a robust, comprehensive farm safety net that helps to provide dairy producing families with greater peace of mind during tough times. Dairy operations enrolled in the 2016 MPP-Dairy program will receive approxiamtely $11.2 million this month. I want to urge dairy producers to use this opportunity to evaluate their enrollment options for 2017, as the enrollment period is currently scheduled to end Sept. 30, 2016. By supporting a strong farm safety net, expanding credit options and growing domestic and foreign markets, USDA is committed to helping America’s dairy operations remain successful.”
Dairy producers who are enrolled at the $6-$8 margin trigger coverage level will be receiving the payments. These payments are triggered when the national average margin, which is the difference between the price of milk and the cost of feed, falls below the level of coverage that was selected by the dairy producer, for a consecutive two-month period. The final USDA prices for milk and feed required to determine the national average were released on July 29th. The national average margin for May/June 2016 is $5.76277 per hundred weight. State specific payment amounts may be found at www.fsa.usda.gov/dairy.