News Archive

  02/05/11 12:37:25 PM

For more information contact: Larry Purdom (417) 442-3846 or Dave Drennan (636) 519-9300


MDA Vice President Kenny Lenz of Bunceton and Executive Director Dave Drennan brief Congressional candidate Vickie Hartzler on the dairy industry at the Gerken Dairy Center during the State Fair.

Applications Being Accepted Now for Dairy Business Planning Grant

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (October 1, 2010) -- Today the Missouri Department of Agriculture announced that the Missouri Agricultural and Small Business Development Authority (MASBDA) is now accepting applications for the Dairy Business Planning Grant Program. This funding will enable Missouri’s dairy producers to work with qualified dairy business planning professionals to develop a business plan to facilitate startup, improve profitability, increase production and encourage modernization and expansion of dairy farms in Missouri. Funding for the grant is being provided by the Missouri Soybean Association and the Missouri Dairy Growth Council (MDGC).  MDA is a member of MDGC.
 
“We continue to look for new ways to help Missouri’s farmers get ahead,” said Director of Agriculture Dr. Jon Hagler. “These business planning grants will help farmers as they seek innovative ways to grow and further develop their existing operations as well as provide needed assistance to those who want to enter the dairy industry.” 
 
The Dairy Planning Grant shall not exceed $5,000 or finance more than 90 percent of the cost of the business plan, whichever is less. The dairy producer is required to pay at least 10 percent of the cost of the work done. Applications will be scored competitively.
 
Applications are being accepted now at mda.mo.gov and must be received no later than 5 p.m. on Nov. 1, 2010. For more information, contact MASBDA at (573) 751-2129 or masbda@mda.mo.gov.
 
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Agriculture and Animal Owner Groups Disappointed in Upcoming Ballot Initiative

COLUMBIA, Mo. (August 3, 2010) -- Secretary of State Robin Carnahan today announced her verification of signatures for a ballot proposal sponsored by the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), Humane Society of Missouri, ASPCA and the Missouri Alliance for Animal Legislation. Considering the emotionally charged and misleading nature of the pending ballot initiative, the announcement is clearly a disappointment to members of Missourians for Animal Care (MOFAC), a coalition of all mainstream agricultural and animal owner groups in the state.

The ballot initiative by HSUS provides a series of redundant mandates on kennel owners who are already covered by a litany of state and federal rules and regulations. Adequate rules and regulations are not the problem. Funding and enforcement are, and this initiative does nothing to address either. 

That’s especially disappointing to MOFAC members who note that the huge budget of HSUS is used almost exclusively for fundraising, lobbying, corporate salaries, executive pension plans and ballot initiatives like this rather than hands-on animal care. As a former HSUS chief investigator noted in the U.S. News & World Report, “The Humane Society should be worried about protecting animals from cruelty. It’s not doing that. The place is all about power and money.”

Good, professional, caring family kennels will be put out of business by this ballot initiative.  But it doesn’t stop there. While the current HSUS effort is about stopping dog breeding and pet ownership, it’s simply another methodical move to accomplish their ultimate goal of ending animal agriculture and meat consumption. The family farmers and livestock producers represented by the organizations comprising MOFAC will be hurt by following a path laid out by the HSUS. Unfortunately, it will be Missouri consumers who ultimately pay the price with a more expensive, less secure food supply. 

Members of MOFAC include: Missouri Agribusiness Association (MO-AG), Missouri Cattlemen’s Association, Missouri Corn Growers Association, Missouri Dairy Association, Missouri Egg Producers, Missouri Equine Council, Missouri Farm Bureau, Missouri Federation of Animal Owners, Missouri Livestock Marketing Association, Missouri Pet Breeders Association, Missouri Pork Association, Missouri Soybean Association, The Poultry Federation, Professional Pet Association, FCS Financial and MFA Incorporated.

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MDA Requests Support Price Boost

CHESTERFIELD, Mo. (April 12, 2010) -- The Missouri Dairy Association (MDA) has requested USDA Secretary Thomas Vilsack to immediately reinstate increased price supports for cheddar block and barrel cheese and non-fat dry milk for a period of at least six months.
 
USDA established higher levels of $1.31 per pound for cheddar cheese, $1.28 per pound for barrel cheese and $.92 cents per pound for non-fat dry milk temporarily for a period from last August 1 to October 30.
 
In a letter to Secretary Vilsack, MDA President Larry Purdom of Purdy pointed out that "2009 was the worst year for dairy farmers in 25 years, and Missouri's dairy farmers are still reeling from the effects of those plunging dairy prices.  We have borrowed up to our eyebrows to make it through and now we are faced with tightening credit at a time when we need it most--spring planting.
 
"With the decline in cheese prices, lenders and other input suppliers are unwilling to loan additional money to dairy farmers--which may force these farmers to go out of business if they can't buy seed, fertilizer, fuel and other inputs for spring planting," said Purdom.
 
"When prices supports were increased last year, it had a profound and positive impact on the market place at little if any costs to the federal government.  The prices for cheese and non-fat dry milk have been extremely volatile over the last several months and have fallen dramatically recently.  There is no positive news for dairy demand only a growing inventory of cheese estimated at over 900 million pounds.
 
"This does not bode well for dairy farm prices and could lead us to another disastrous year," said Purdom. 
 
"When USDA increased the support price for cheese by $0.18 per pound on August 1, 2009, the "market" incorporated that new benchmark and raised market prices without any cheese being sold to the government at the higher price.  MDA believes the same situation would likely occur today.
 
"MDA joins the broad range of support for this action already shown by the Northeast Dairy Farmers Cooperatives and the Alliance of Western Milk Producers,” concluded Purdom.

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Agricultural Organizations Unite to Protect Missourians’ Right to Raise Animals

 

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (April 7, 2010) – Agricultural organizations throughout the state have banded together in support of legislation to protect Missourians’ rights to raise animals.  

Missourians for Animal Care, a diverse coalition representing farm and ranch families, veterinarians, pet breeders and agricultural input suppliers, is working with legislators to advance a constitutional amendment to present to voters defending the rights of animal owners in the state.

“Missourians for Animal Care was formed to provide unified support for our state’s family farmers and others to protect their rights to raise domesticated animals in a humane manner,” said Don Nikodim, executive vice-president of the Missouri Pork Association and chairman of the coalition.  “We believe this right is fundamental to the livelihood of thousands of Missourians who work to make their living by raising animals.”

On March 4 by a margin of 96-52, the House of Representatives passed House Joint Resolution 86, which includes language to protect the right to raise animals in a humane manner.  The resolution has since been revised in the Senate, stating, “it shall be the right of citizens to raise domesticated animals in compliance with any applicable state laws or local regulations.”  The resolution also declares regulations regarding the welfare of domesticated animals would only be valid when approved by the General Assembly or promulgated by state agencies through administrative rule.

“We support practicality and common-sense-based rules and regulations when it comes to animal care,” said Jeff Windett, executive vice-president of the Missouri Cattlemen’s Association and vice-chairman of the coalition. “Agriculture is the backbone of the state’s economy and this resolution will help us to ensure it maintains that position.”

If approved by the Senate, the constitutional amendment would go on the August or November election ballot and need a simple majority to pass.

Missourians for Animal Care is composed of the following organizations: MFA Incorporated, Missouri Agribusiness Association, Missouri Cattlemen’s Association, Missouri Corn Growers Association, Missouri Dairy Association, Missouri Equine Council, Missouri Farm Bureau, Missouri Livestock Marketing Association, Missouri Pork Association and Missouri Soybean Association.

Contact: 
Adam Buckallew 
(573) 823-7496

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Court of Appeals Overturns Arrow Rock Decision

 

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (April 6, 2010) -- The Missouri Court of Appeals for the Western District of Missouri reversed a case that blocked a proposed hog farm from being located near the Village of Arrow Rock. The case, Friends of Arrow Rock, et al. v. Missouri DNR, et al., arose when a Missouri farmer was granted a construction permit to build a CAFO two miles from the Village of Arrow Rock 

The Village of Arrow Rock and Friends of Arrow Rock challenged the permit, arguing it should not have been issued because it was too close to the Village of Arrow Rock, a historic site. The trial court agreed, and held that CAFOs could not be located within a two-mile radius of the Arrow Rock State Park, and barred existing CAFOs in that two-mile radius from expanding their operations.

The Missouri Pork Association, Missouri Cattlemen’s Association, Missouri Egg Council, Missouri Dairy Association, and the Missouri Farm Bureau joined the DNR in appealing the case to the Western District Court of Appeals.

Upon reviewing the trial court’s decision, the Western District Court of Appeals vacated the judgment, calling the findings of fact “wholly unsupported by any evidence” and the conclusions of law “erroneous.”

“The Court just said what we already knew,” said Don Nikodim, executive director of the Missouri Pork Association. “The Court of Appeals decision is very vindicating. We believed the earlier decision by the court was inappropriate, and wanted to fight for the rights of our members and all Missouri farmers.”

“This is a great victory for animal agriculture,” said Jeff Windett, executive vice president of the Missouri Cattlemen’s Association. “We are very pleased with the outcome.”

The Court’s opinion can be read in its entirety at www.courts.mo.gov/file.jsp?id=38015.

The Missouri Pork Association represents the state’s pork producers in the areas of promotion, research, education and legislation. For more information about this or any other programs of the Missouri Pork Association, go to www.mopork.com, or call the Missouri Pork Association office at (573) 445-8375.

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2010 Missouri Dairy Profit Seminars

Sponsored by Missouri Dairy Association, the Commercial Agriculture Program and University of Missouri Extension

“Strategies for Financial Recovery”

9:30 a.m. Registration and visit exhibitors
Coffee, milk and pastries sponsored by KABA/Select Sires and Missouri Corn Growers Association

10:00 a.m. Welcome

10:05 a.m. “Key Indicators of a Sustainable Dairy”
Joe Horner, University of Missouri Commercial Agriculture Dairy/Beef Economist, Columbia, MO

10:45 a.m. “Bounce Back! Tools to Overcome Dairy Challenges”
Keith Schwinke, Area Sales Manager, Alltech, sponsored by Alltech

11:30 a.m. “HSUS Threat”
Dave Drennan, Missouri Dairy Association, Chesterfield, MO

Noon Lunch and visit with exhibitors
(*Bring along a sample of your TMR and UMC will do a free particle sort evaluation.)

1:30 p.m. “Different Methods of Controlling Ration Costs”
Matt Waldron, University of Missouri, Animal Science Division, Dairy Nutritionist, Columbia, MO

2:15 p.m. “Remove the Toxin-Improve Your Product”
Dr. Jonathan Broomhead, Chief Research Scientist, Oil Dri Corporation, sponsored by Oil Dri Corporation

2:45 p.m. Are You Maximizing Your Profits?”
Rick Bonander, Business Manager, Adisseo, sponsored by Gladwin A. Read/Adisseo

3:30 p.m. Adjourn

Registration fee is $20.00 payable at each location. Lunch reservations are needed.

Call the Extension office listed below TODAY for lunch reservations.

Locations:

Monday, February 22
Pork Place, State Fair Grounds, Sedalia
Meal Reservations: Judy Elling 660/584-3658

Tuesday, February 23
SW Research Center, Mt. Vernon
Meal Reservations: Tony Richard at 417/847-3161

Wednesday, February 24
Laclede Electric Coop Office, Lebanon
Meal Reservations: Ted Probert at 417/741-6134

Thursday, February 25
Hagie’s Nineteen, 618 N. Washington Avenue, Union
Meal Reservations: Ken Bolte at 636/583-5141

Friday, February 26
Cape Girardeau County Extension Office, Extension Office 684 W. Jackson Trail, Jackson
Meal Reservations: 573/243-3581

Missouri Dairy Forum

Sponsored by Missouri Dairy Association, Missouri Holstein Association, Missouri Brown Swiss Association, Missouri Guernsey Breeders Association, Missouri Jersey Cattle Club, Missouri Dairy Growth Council, and the Sho-Mo Dairy Heifer Growers Association

The Resort at Port Arrowhead, Lake Ozark

Friday January 29, 2010

8:00 a.m. Coffee, Milk & Pastries Sponsored by MFA,Inc.and Waikato Milking Systems

8:30 Registration and visit exhibitor

9:25 Call to order--Larry Purdom, Missouri Dairy Association (MDA) President

9:30 “Animal Agriculture Emergency Planning and Response”-- Amber Wilson, Senior Trainer, SES, Inc., Merriam, Kansas, sponsored by SES, Inc.

10:10 “How to Best Utilize Our Resources in Raising Replacement Heifers”-- Lewis Anderson, National Sales Manager & Calf Management Consultant, Calf-Tel by Hample Corporation, Germantown, Wisconsin and President of the Dairy Calf & Heifer Association, sponsored by Calf-Tel by Hample Corporation

10:50 “Considerations for Improving Your Resynchronization Program" -- Todd R. Bilby, Ph.D., Associate Professor Extension Dairy Specialist, Texas A&M, Stephenville, Texas, sponsored by Intervet Schering Plough Animal Health

11:30 Break and visit with exhibitors

Noon Luncheon sponsored by Hiland Dairy Foods Company and Purina

Key Note Address—Congressman Roy Blunt (confirmed), 7th District

1:30 p.m. “Bounce Back-Nutrition Strategies to Recover Dairy Performance” -- Dr. Roger Scaletti, North American Bioplex Manager, Alltech, Lexington, Kentucky, sponsored by Alltech

2:10 MDA 25th Annual Meeting with Policy Development Session

2:15 Sho-Mo Dairy Heifer Growers Association Annual Meeting

“Tips for Building a Successful Dairy Heifer Contracting Business”—Lewis Anderson

3:15 Milk Break sponsored by Turner’s Special Supply and Mycogen Seeds

4:30 MDA 25th Annual Meeting adjourns--visit with exhibitors

4:30 Missouri Holstein Association (MHA) committee meetings

5:00 Missouri Guernsey Breeders Association (MGBA) committee meetings

5:00 Youth Activity Room

6:00 MHA Board Meeting

7:00 MGBA Board Meeting

Saturday January 30, 2010

7:30 a.m. Coffee, milk and pastries sponsored by Missouri Corn Growers Association and Pioneer & visit exhibitors

8:00 Missouri Holstein Association Annual Meeting

9:00 Missouri Junior Guernsey Breeders Meeting

(MGBA Annual Meeting immediately following)

9:00 Missouri Junior Holstein Association Annual Meeting & Princess/Little Miss Interviews

10:00 Missouri Brown Swiss Association Annual Meeting

11:00 Missouri Jersey Cattle Club Board Meeting

11:15 Missouri Holstein Association Junior Awards

12:00 p.m. Fun auction with items provided by Missouri Holstein Districts

12:30 Luncheon sponsored by Association of Missouri Electric Cooperatives, Missouri Soybean Association, Elanco Dairy Business and FCS Financial and Crowning of Holstein Princess & Little Miss

Trade Show Closes

1:30 p.m. MHA and Missouri Holstein Junior Association Annual Meetings

 


Dairy Payments Welcome Sign

CHESTERFIELD (
December 18, 2009) The United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) announcement of the release of the Dairy Economic Loss Assistance Payment (DELAP) program funds is a welcome sign for Missouri’s dairy farmers.  These funds were part of USDA’s FY2010 appropriations approved by Congress.

“We are very appreciative to our Congressional delegation for their support in recognizing the financial crisis facing our dairy farmers,” says Larry Purdom, Missouri Dairy Association (MDA) president and a dairy farmer from Purdy.  “We visited with our delegation in September and it was one of the best rounds of visits I have ever had in one day.

 
“Each office was important to us and particularly Senator Kit Bond and Congresswoman Jo Ann Emerson since they served on the Congressional Conference Committee which concluded the final recommendations on the USDA spending bill,” says Purdom.

“This one time DELAP payment will be calculated on each dairy operation’s total pounds of milk production from February through July multiplied by two up to a maximum production of 6 million pounds per operation,” says Dave Drennan, MDA Executive Director.  “The expected payment rate is approximately $0.32 per hundredweight.

“This will not make our dairy farmers solvent when you consider most dairy farmers have been losing $5.00 per hundredweight since January 1 but any and all support certainly helps.  It’s a crucial time for most dairy farmers with winter coming on and their need to lay in an adequate feed supply to get through until spring.

“Missouri dairy cow numbers have dropped by 5,000 since January 1 resulting in an economic hit to the state of approximately $68.7 million.  So anything that can be done to stem the tide of dairy farmers disappearing is a plus for our state and its consumers.  We appreciate the support of our Congressional delegation during these tough economic times,” concludes Drennan.

State Department of Agriculture Proposes Emergency Rule Change to Provide Needed Assistance

JEFFERSON CITY (October 26, 2009) -- The Missouri Department of Agriculture and the Missouri Agricultural and Small Business Development Authority (MASBDA) are proposing an emergency rule change to the Single Purpose Animal Loan Guarantee Program to help extend credit to Missouri’s producers.  Ag industries, especially dairy and pork, continue to face high input costs and sustained low sell prices well below the cost of production.

“The Department is committed to taking a proactive approach in finding opportunities to reduce the dire economic impacts affecting our agricultural community,” said Director of Agriculture Dr. Jon Hagler.  “We have asked our affiliated boards to investigate all possible options and tools within their disposal to find ways to provide assistance for Missouri’s number one industry. This proposed rule change stems from that effort and piggybacks nicely on national efforts to stabilize prices.”  

The Single Purpose Animal Loan Guarantee Program provides a 50 percent guarantee on loans up to $250,000 that banks and other lenders make to independent producers.  The current rules for this program do not include options for refinancing or loans for operating capital.  Therefore, MASBDA is proposing an emergency rule change to open up the program to qualified farmers from all agricultural sectors.  The emergency rule change is effective November 2, 2009.

“This proposed change is consistent with the mission of MASBDA and will provide much needed assistance to producers at a critical time," stated Jeff Case, chairman of MASBDA.  "The general economic downturn and the current credit crunch have impacted all of agriculture and the dairy and pork industries in particular.”

For more information about financial assistance offered by the Department of Agriculture, visit mda.mo.gov or call MASBDA at (573) 751-2129.
 
Sixteen Missouri Ag Groups Support "Meat the Need" Proposal

Signing the joint letter were the Missouri Dairy Association, Missouri Dairy Growth Council, Central Equity Dairy Cooperative, FCS Financial, Missouri Agribusiness Association (MO-AG), Missouri Association of Electric Cooperatives, Missouri Bankers Association, Missouri Cattlemen's Association, Missouri Corn Growers Association, Missouri Egg Council, MFA, Inc., Missouri Farmers Union, Missouri Pork Association, Missouri Soybean Association, Missouri Veterinary Medical Association and The Poultry Federation.

"This is one of the broadest Missouri ag coalitions to ever come together to stress the urgency for action by the Administration," says Dave Drennan, Missouri Dairy Association (MDA) executive director.  "We have requested our Congressional Delegation to urge the President and his Administration to reallocate Federal Stimulus funding immediately for this proposal.

"The NASDA Plan would establish a tiered-purchase program for dairy and pork products, as well as a one-time purchase of turkey products.  This would remove excess meat and dairy products from the market and place them into food assistance programs," says Drennan.

"The implementation timing of this program is critical to improving the lives of millions of Americans who produce the food and for those struggling to put food on the table," says Don Nikodim, executive director of the Missouri Pork Association.

"Missouri's livestock producers are facing a crisis due to a variety of issues, including Governmental action which has drastically increased production costs, and Governmental inaction in regard to opening international markets. This combined with a weak worldwide economy, increased energy costs and supply issues are causing billions of dollars in losses and driving farmers out of business through no fault of their own."

"Currently, dairy producers are losing $5.00 a hundredweight on their milk and pork producers are losing around $25.00 per hog. At the same time, nearly 36 million Americans are participating in the nation's Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) - a 21% increase from July 2008 to July 2009. Support to put meat and milk into the SNAP program is a win-win for producers and consumers," concludes Drennan.

 
Missouri Dairy Requests Support in Washington
CHESTERFIELD (September 21, 2009) -- Missouri Dairy Association (MDA) representatives took their case for financial support for Missouri's dairy producers to Washington DC last week. 
 
"We had some of the most productive visits with our Congressional delegation that I have ever experienced and we pressed the issue for the immediate need of financial support for Missouri's dairy producers," says Larry Purdom, MDA President and a producer from Purdy, Missouri.  Accompanying Purdom to Washington was MDA Executive Director Dave Drennan.
"Our number one concern was support for the proposed additional $350 million for dairy in the 2010 USDA Appropriations Bill," says Purdom.  "This passed the Senate with the help of Senators Christopher S. "Kit" Bond and Claire McCaskill but now goes to a Conference Committee for reconciliation since the House did not have this provision.  
 
 
 
"If approved this money could be used by USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack several ways to help dairy farmers.  One option we explored with our delegation was the purchase of cheese off of the commercial market for distribution to food banks or possibly overseas.  But the money must be approved first," says Purdom.
 
 
 
"We also explained, to the delegation, our request to Governor Nixon for a one time emergency payment to Missouri's dairy producers utilizing Federal stimulus money," says Drennan.  It was news to our Congressional offices but they all agreed to investigate the potential use and distribution of these funds to help our producers.   
 
 
 
"The delegation was very interested in the news report from a dairy meeting in New York State where New York Congressman Eric Massa said state delegations are competing for about $1 billion in stimulus funds that was appropriated as part of the original $787 billion package.  At the same meeting, U.S. House Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson of Minnesota was quoted saying "there's money available" and his Committee "was looking into it".
 
 
 
"Our request to Governor Nixon was for a one time emergency payment of $2.00 per hundredweight on January through June milk production which would pump $16.48 million into Missouri's rural economy with an extended impact of $115.36 million to $164.8 million," says Drennan.
 
 
 
"Missouri's dairy producers are losing thousands of dollars and the impact on the economy of Missouri is staggering.  Prices received by dairymen are at a historic bottom, currently averaging about $5.00 per hundredweight below production costs.
 
 
 
"Missouri is a milk deficit state now and imports about 1.7 billion pounds of milk from other states to satisfy all of the needs of our consumers.  Without some immediate financial relief to Missouri's dairy producers, this deficit will continue to expand greatly and Missouri's consumers and economy will continue to suffer," concludes Drennan.

Missouri Dairy Requests Special Session
 
CHESTERFIELD (Sept. 10, 2009) -- The Missouri Dairy Association (MDA) has requested Governor Jay Nixon to call for a special session of the Missouri General Assembly to address the current crisis facing Missouri's dairy producers. 
 
"Since our August 12 request, for a one time emergency payment from Federal stimulus money to Missouri's dairy producers, we have been told that Governor Nixon needs the General Assembly's authority so therefore we have asked the Governor to call for a special session to address the current crisis facing dairy producers," says Larry Purdom, MDA President and a producer from Purdy, Missouri.
 
"Our situation has not improved and th e expectations for a better milk price for producers may not occur until next spring," says Purdom.  "Missouri's dairy producers are losing thousands of dollars and the impact on the economy of Missouri is staggering.  Prices received by dairymen are at a historic bottom, currently averaging about $5.00 per hundredweight below production costs.
 
"We need action now for many of us to survive and to be able to continue to supply Missouri consumers with a wholesome, locally produced milk supply.  Our request to Governor Nixon for a one time emergency payment of $2.00 per hundredweight on January through June milk production would pump $16.48 million into Missouri's rural economy with an extended impact of $115.36 million to $164.8 million," says Purdom.
 
"Other states are looking at the Federal stimulus money to help their dairy producers," says Dave Drennan, MDA Executive Director.  "We saw a news report recently from a dairy meeting in New York state where New York Congressman Eric Massa said state delegations are competing for about $1 billion in stimulus funds that was appropriated as part of the original $787 billion package.  At the same meeting, U.S. House Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson of Minnesota was qu oted saying "there's money available" and his Committee "was looking into it".
 
"Our hope is that Missouri is moving forward with a request for Federal stimulus funds and that the General Assembly grants the authority to Governor Nixon to financially help Missouri's dairy producers sooner than later. 
 
"Missouri is a milk deficit state now and imports from other states about 1.7 billion pounds of milk to satisfy all of the needs of our consumers.  The state has 110,000 dairy cows with an economic impact of $13,737 per cow or $1.5 billion.  Without the Governor's immediate action, this deficit will continue to expand greatly and Missouri's consumers and economy will suffer," concludes Drennan.

 
Missouri Dairy Requests Emergency Relief
CHESTERFIELD (August 12, 2009) -- The Missouri Dairy Association (MDA) has asked Governor Jay Nixon for emergency relief for Missouri's dairy producers.

"A group of our members met with the Governor today and presented our request for a one time emergency payment from Federal stimulus money of $2.00 per hundredweight on January through June milk production from Missouri's 2,000+ dairy producers," says Larry Purdom, MDA president from Purdy.

"The Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute (FAPRI) of the University of Missouri estimates this one time emergency payment to be $16.48 million.  Missouri currently has 110,000 cows with an economic impact of $ 13,737 per cow or $1.5 billion.

"Our dairy producers are facing an economic crisis unlike anything we have seen in the last 25 years.  Dairy farm prices have fallen to less than half of our production costs in the last six months.  We have been losing an average of $5.00 per hundredweight since January due to the declining demand for dairy products due to the sagging economy here in the U.S. and abroad," says Purdom. "Other states are already stepping up to help their dairy farmers.  Arkansas, Connecticut, Louisiana, Maine and Vermont have made financial commitments and a request has been made for $60 million in New York State.

"Dairy producers are price takers, not price makers and thus this decline has been beyond their control," says Dave Drennan, MDA Executive Director.  "This has put a severe financial crunch on Missouri's dairy families. Now they face financing drying up, bills piling up, and fall harvest coming on sooner than expected.

"This one time emergency payment would help keep a local milk supply in Missouri and provide an immediate economic stimulus to Missouri's rural economy," says Drennan.  "It could mean an impact of $115.36 million to $164.8 million to the state.
 
"Missouri is a milk deficit state now and imports about 1.7 billion pounds of milk to satisfy all of the needs of our consumers.  Without the Governor's immediate action, this deficit will continue to expand greatly and Missouri's consumers and economy will suffer," concludes Drennan.
 
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