Kim Souza at the Morning Business News recently reported on the dairy stimulus that will soon be assisting local farmers. Last week, President Barack Obama signed a stimulus packaged for emergency funding, and the dairy producers will get a share of this stimulus package to aid in struggling times. Read on for more information…
Local dairy farms will soon share in the $350 million emergency funding stimulus signed into law by President Barack Obama on Wednesday. The stipend may not be enough for some struggling farms to hang on given the broad economic plight in the industry, according to dairy insiders. Dairy farmers hit rock bottom this past year, battered by price deflation and volatile grain costs, said Wayne Kellogg, dairy expert from the University of Arkansas.
Base milk prices paid to Northwest Arkansas dairies plummeted an average of 40 percent in the months of February to August, compared to a year ago, Kellogg said. The dire economic conditions have forced adjustments in the dairy sector. Many of the local farms are hanging on in anticipation of government assistance during this crisis, Kellogg said.
Local farms likely will receive a direct payment ranging from 15 cents per 100 pounds of milk production to $1.80 per hundredweight, said Jackie Klippenstein, vice president of industrial and legislative affairs for Dairy Farmers of America. (Hundredweight is the standard unit of measure for milk, it is equal to 100 pounds.) There are any number of ways for the government to calculate payments.