DairyBusiness Update for Nov. 13, 2013

Mooney blasts House dairy title

Attendees at this week’s joint annual meeting of the National Dairy Board, United Dairy Industry Association, and National Milk Producers Federation in Arizona were told that the dairy provisions in the pending House farm bill are “costly to taxpayers, a bonanza for processors and not what’s needed to help farmers.”

Speaking at the meeting, board chair Randy Mooney, of Rogersville, Missouri, said “the House of Representatives was dangerously close to repeating the mistakes of the early 1980s, when the federal dairy safety net was far too generous.”

He praised the Senate version which he said “has embraced a combination of margin insurance and a market stabilization program that sends clear signals to farmers when less milk is needed.”  “It’s not government forcing you not to produce,” Mooney said, “It’s a simple, voluntary device to encourage a faster rebound in healthy margins, and it’s a way to reduce the cost of this new dairy program to taxpayers.”

Mooney, who also serves as board chair of Dairy Farmers of America, one of the nation’s largest dairy cooperatives, addressed several other issues in his speech including immigration, humane animal care, and the proliferation of imitation dairy products.


New FARM Program report shows progress

Dairy farmers participating in the industry’s program to quantify animal care practices are continuing to improve the manner in which they adhere to the program’s standards, according to a new summary year in review report issued by the National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF).

Available to all dairy farmers in the United States, Farmers Assuring Responsible Management (FARM) is a voluntary, national set of guidelines designed to demonstrate farmers’ commitment to outstanding animal care and a quality milk supply. Cooperatives, proprietary milk processors, and individual producers are using the program to assure consumers that the dairy foods they purchase are produced with integrity. Since enrollment began in September 2010, the FARM Animal Care Program has been implemented by suppliers accounting for 70% of the nation’s milk supply.

At this week’s NMPF annual meeting in Phoenix, a newly-released annual assessment derived from 8,000 second-party evaluations, found universal adoption of many of the best practices from the program. For example, 94% farms enrolled in the program train their employees to properly move animals that cannot walk, and 98% train employees to handle calves with a minimum of stress. 

Also NMPF released its 2014 safe use manual for antibiotics and other animal drugs. The Milk and Dairy Beef Drug Residue Prevention Manual permits producers to quickly review those antibiotics approved for use with dairy animals. It can also be used to educate farm managers in how to avoid drug residues in milk and meat. Visit www.nationaldairyfarm.com.


New NMPF leader urges dairy farmers get more engaged 

Incoming National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) president Jim Mulhern urged NMPF members to become even more engaged in the organization and the policymaking process during his remarks at the organization's annual meeting. Mulhern will take over as NMPF president and CEO on Jan. 1, 2014, when long-time leader Jerry Kozak retires. 

Mulhern also stressed the need for increased transparency in the dairy industry. He said transparency requires telling stories about brands and product categories and entire industries. 

On other subjects, Mulhern said once the 2013 farm bill is enacted, NMPF should tackle reform of the federal milk marketing order system and consider addressing some changes to federal identity standards for dairy foods – but only if they benefit farmers.


And the ‘REAL Seal’ winner is … DairyUS

The new cartoon character helping to build awareness of the advantages of real dairy foods has a name: DairyUS, the National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) announced at its annual meeting. The animated character, modeled after the iconic REAL® Seal logo, will help a new generation of consumers distinguish between genuine U.S. dairy products and a growing list of list of imitations. A video announcing the name is on the REAL® Seal website homepage.

NMPF asked the public to suggest names for the character last summer, using the REAL® Seal website and new REAL® SealFacebook page. Three finalists were selected from among more than 100 names submitted. An online vote was held from mid-September through Election Day, Nov. 5.

NMPF also offered a preview of the REAL® Seal buyer’s guide, a web-based search engine that will make it easier for consumers to patronize brands and stores that offer real dairy products. The buyer’s guide website will soon be online.


‘Protecting Your Profits’ call is Nov. 30

Pennsylvania’s Center for Dairy Excellence (CDE) will host a “Protecting Your Profits” conference call on Nov. 20, 12-12:15 p.m. Alan Zepp, CDE risk management program manager for the center,  will discuss global and domestic issues influencing prices for dairy and other commodities in the next 10 months, with a brief review of risk management opportunities available, and an update on the status of Livestock Gross Margin (LGM-Dairy) margin insurance.

There is no charge to participate in the call, but pre-registration is required. To register, call the center at 717-346-0849 with name, phone number, and e-mail address. Once registered, participants will receive the call-in number and information. Calls are hosted in a webinar format to be recorded and made available for later viewing. Past Protecting Your Profits calls can be accessed at www.cenerfordairyexcellence.org under “Dairy Information.”


Mielke’s Market Daily

(A daily wrap-up of dairy markets and the things affecting them, from DairyBusiness Update associate editor Lee Mielke)

Cash cheddar barrels rolled down another 1¢ this morning on an uncovered offer, and are now trading at $1.76/lb. The blocks held at $1.8025/lb. on a trade, but are 4.25¢ above the barrels, still in a normal spread, but perhaps pushing the envelope a bit.

FC Stone market analyst  Ryan Cox wrote in this morning’s eDairy Insider Opening Bell: “While it appears the seasonal peak occurred in early October, CME spot cheese prices could see some bumps higher as buyers continue to source product for the year-end holidays and the Super Bowl in February.”

Butter keeps marching higher, tacking on another 2¢ this morning, following yesterday’s 2.25¢ jump, and Monday’s 0.25¢ gain. The spot price now sits at $1.6050/lb. One car was sold at $1.60/lb. but 2 unfilled bids at $1.6050/lb. took the price higher. One offer at $1.61/lb. got no response.

Grade A nonfat dry milk, on an unfilled bid, gained 1¢ as well, following a 0.5¢ increase yesterday and 1.25¢ on Monday. Extra Grade is holding at $1.87/lb., with no activity. 

Today’s market closing prices:
Butter: up 2¢, to $1.6050/lb.
Cheddar blocks: unchanged, at $1.8025/lb.
Cheddar barrels: down 1¢, to $1.76/lb.
Grade A nonfat dry milk: up 1¢, to $1.96/lb.
Extra Grade nonfat dry milk: unchanged, at $1.87/lb.


California powder going up

The California Department of Food and Agriculture’s weekly nonfat dry milk prices have moved higher. The price ending the week of Nov. 1 was $1.8390/lb. on reported sales of 7.5 million lbs. The week ending Nov. 8 saw the price at $1.8634/lb., on sales of 8.25 million lbs.

Coming up: USDA issues its monthly Livestock, Dairy, and Poultry Outlook Friday afternoon, after the markets have closed for the week, but next week will have plenty to look for, starting with the October Milk Production report on Tuesday; federal order Class I base milk price announcement on Wednesday; Livestock Slaughter report on Thursday; and October Cold Storage report on Friday.


Thursday on DairyLine:

• NMPF's Chris Galen recaps the joint annual meeting from Phoenix.

• Bill Sirico explains his company, Animal Health International.


Today in DairyBusiness Weekly:

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• Check out our industry briefs and show and sale calendar, view our product spotlight, listen to our podcasts and more!


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