The information below has been supplied by dairy marketers and other industry organizations. It has not been edited, verified or endorsed by Hoard’s Dairyman.

A few deadlines are fast approaching for dairy farmers, and FarmFirst Dairy Cooperative would like to remind farmers to take the time to visit the FSA office to not miss out on a payment that may be waiting for them.

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced on November 15 the second tranche of 2019 Market Facilitation Program (MFP) payments aimed at assisting farmers suffering from damage due to unjustified trade retaliation by foreign nations. MFP signup at local FSA offices will run through Friday, December 6, 2019.

The Dairy Margin Coverage program is also open to enrollment until next, Friday December 13. The DMC program offers reasonably priced protection to dairy farmers when the difference between the all-milk price and the average feed cost (the margin) falls below a certain dollar amount selected by the farmer. Dairy farmers have earned more than $300 million from the 2019 program.

“We are confident that the trade negotiations currently taking place will provide stronger trade agreements and ultimately benefit U.S. agriculture, but until then, there’s only so much we can do,” says John Rettler, dairy farmer from Neosho and president of FarmFirst Dairy Cooperative. “We cannot be certain of how markets will play out in 2020, however, participating in the MFP program may help farmers in the short term and enrolling in DMC may provide valuable protection when the markets may be unforgiving. We encourage dairy farmers to take the time to visit their local FSA office and enroll before these sign-up periods are over.”

FarmFirst Dairy Cooperative, established in 2013 and based in Madison, Wis., represents farmers in Wisconsin, Minnesota, South Dakota, Michigan, Iowa, Illinois and Indiana by providing legislative and regulatory advocacy, dairy marketing services, disaster protection, laboratory testing opportunities and industry promotion. FarmFirst Dairy Cooperative is a merger of three long-time prominent Wisconsin-based cooperatives. Learn more about FarmFirst Dairy Cooperative by visiting: