Health Care

Facing deadline, most Wisconsin dairy farms find new buyer

Facing deadline, most Wisconsin dairy farms find new buyer

Tuesday's move comes, as dozens of Wisconsin dairy farmers continue to search for new processors to purchase their milk. State and federal lawmakers in the USA have been urgently seeking short-term solutions along with an investigation of trade pacts with Canada. Inventories are heavy. Some contacts anticipate softening butter prices in the near future however others see support coming from firm worldwide butter prices and greater use of cream in ice cream and other Class II dairy products. "This is not our idea of a properly functioning free trade agreement".

While campaigning for the presidency, Mr. Trump questioned the effectiveness of NAFTA.

Canada recently lowered prices for a type of ultra-filtered milk, resulting in a decrease in imports from dairy producers in northern U.S. states like Wisconsin and NY.

The Trump administration has attempted to fulfill the president's campaign promise to take a harder line on USA trade policy by increasingly picking fights with Canadian exporters. "Now we're getting ready to pump the milk", Hupf said. He is acting as if Canada has more to lose than the U.S.in a trade war, but that's a foolish gambit.

The argument focuses on what is known as ultra-filtered milk.

Some of the farms won't get the same price for their milk that they received from Grassland, but they said it's enough to keep them in business.

Regarding the excess milk supply versus the cost of milk. Although still labeled a temporary program, the 4M milk class was extended to run until early 2017 with no termination date. Multi-national grain traders made huge profits dumping subsidized USA corn on Mexico, crushing much of Mexico's farm economy to the point that Mexican Catholic Bishops said that NAFTA was leading to the "cultural death" of their nation.

In an interview with The Wall Street Journal, US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said that Canada had been notified about Trump's decision and that the tariff will be applied retroactively. For years, calls for changes to supply management were ignored - after all, the milk quotas are worth more than $30 billion.

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Trump's advisers are deeply divided over how aggressively to erect trade barriers. The Wisconsin governor said the two men spoke Monday and Tuesday, and Walker took to Twitter to announce it.

With the United States now exporting 14% to 16% of its production, what happens in Canada, Mexico, New Zealand, Europe and China has a huge impact on milk prices in NY and California and every point in between.

President Trump's speech April 18 at Snap-On Tools in Kenosha included criticism of Canada's trade policy regarding ultrafiltered milk. GDT Cheddar cheese equated to $1.5705 per pound US and compares to last Friday's CME block Cheddar at $1.5450. Dairy inventories are rising as prices drop. That's upping overall production, reducing milk prices, and squeezing out smaller operations. Over the last decades, milk sales have been as lumpy as cottage cheese and in recent years have nosedived, as have the prices of futures. In addition, the letter noted that "U.S. exports helped the dairy sector maintain roughly 110,000 U.S.jobs in farming and manufacturing". "This may be an opportunity to find other places for skim milk powder". Chuck Schumer of NY backed Trump's opposition to the Canadian policy.

So what are government's options?

"Dairy farmers should not have their businesses ruined and lives upended as a result of this unfair trade practice", Baldwin said in a statement. There are many poverty-stricken communities, both at home and overseas, that would welcome our excess inventories.

Eight processors stepped in to take the farmers' milk.

Shelley Goldberg is an investment adviser and environmental sustainability consultant.


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