Family Dairies USA, Manitowoc Milk Producers Cooperative and Milwaukee Cooperative Milk Producers to count member votes on proposed merger at two upcoming Wisconsin events.
Members of Family Dairies USA, Manitowoc Milk Producers Cooperative and Milwaukee Cooperative Milk Producers are invited to witness history in the making at a pair of Wisconsin vote counting meetings on December 18 in Stevens Point and Brookfield.
During the special meetings, membership votes will be counted on the proposed merger of the three milk marketing cooperatives. The meetings are set for December 18 at 10 a.m. and are open only to current members. Family Dairies USA and Manitowoc Milk Producers Cooperative members will meet at the Holiday Inn in Stevens Point, Wis., (1001 Amber Avenue, Stevens Point, WI 54482). Milwaukee Cooperative Milk Producers members' votes will be counted at their office in Brookfield, Wis. (2965 North Brookfield Road, Brookfield, WI 53045).
If passed, the three cooperatives would become the largest Midwest dairy marketing cooperative offering immense collaborative opportunities for all members. For members' votes to be counted, votes must be received at the member's respective cooperative office by 4:00 p.m. on December 17, if sent via mail. Members can also hand-deliver their vote to their cooperatives' special meeting on December 18.
The vote counting process comes after a series of information sharing opportunities this fall. Following the announcement of a unanimous board vote to recommend a unified merger for the membership, all cooperative members received additional information on the merger through regional meetings. Detailed literature and a voting ballot were also distributed to all cooperative members. If the merger passes, the new, combined cooperative will begin business function on January 1, 2013.
"The collaborative benefits of the unified merger present an exciting opportunity for our members with significant combined strength in brand value and marketing opportunities," says David Cooper, general manager of Family Dairies USA. "To achieve these efficiencies, members need to make their voices heard today."
"We have identified several greater efficiencies of this combined milk marketing group," adds Dennis Donohue, general manager of Manitowoc Milk Producers Cooperative. "Each cooperative has a strong history of dedicated producers; together, we can achieve benefits in efficiency and create a stronger voice for our members."
"December 18 will be a historic day for our cooperatives and the dairy industry," says Jim Bird, general manager of Milwaukee Cooperative Milk Producers. "We encourage all members to vote yes on this promising opportunity today and to invite all members to attend one of the vote counting events on December 18 to witness history in the making."
For additional information on the proposed merger, members are encouraged to visit www.yourcoopportunity.com or www.facebook.com/yourcoopportunity or to contact their respective cooperative.
Milwaukee Cooperative Milk Producers, based in Brookfield, Wis., represents approximately 500 farms, providing insurance alternatives to dairy producers. Together with Manitowoc Milk Producers Cooperative, they co-own Fox Valley Quality Control Laboratory in Neenah, Wis. The cooperative was established in 1916.
Family Dairies USA, based in Madison, Wis., is a grassroots, non-partisan, regional dairy co-op organization dedicated to bring fairness and equity to its family farm members in dairy policy matters and to provide excellence in dairy marketing services at reasonable prices. Family Dairies represents approximately 2,300 farms.
Manitowoc Milk Producers Cooperative, based in Manitowoc, Wis., was established in 1933 and represents more than 2,650 farms. The cooperative provides required Federal Milk Marketing Order services to members and is co-owner of a milk quality testing laboratory for components, cultures and somatic cell counts.