With the ongoing COVID-19 crisis teaching hard lessons on risk management throughout agriculture, and with dairy margins expected to be volatile over the next year, the National Milk Producers Federation is urging farmers to sign up for maximum 2021 coverage under the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Dairy Margin Coverage program. DMC signup begins today.
“The DMC emphatically proved its worth this year, as payouts rapidly reacted to unprecedented price plunges and protected farmers exactly when they most needed help,” said Jim Mulhern, president and CEO of NMPF. “Coronavirus-related volatility in dairy markets is expected to continue well into 2021, with DMC payments a possibility. That makes it essential that farmers include DMC coverage in the robust risk-management plans they will need to ensure financial stability.”
DMC, the main risk-protection tool for dairy farmers enacted in the 2018 Farm Bill, is designed to promote stable revenues and protect against financial catastrophe on some or all of a farmer’s milk. Despite forecasts in late 2019 predicting that DMC assistance wouldn’t be needed by farmers in 2020, margins instead fell to their lowest levels in more than a decade in the first half of this year, triggering payments that undoubtedly kept many participating dairies afloat. And unlike difficult-to-predict federal disaster assistance that’s provided via specific legislation or administrative action, DMC coverage offers certainty in times of need, allowing for better financial planning and faster payment when necessary.
· Affordable higher coverage levels that permit all dairy producers to insure margins up to $9.50/cwt. on their Tier 1 (first five million pounds) production history. Recent margin trends in reference to that $9.50 threshold is included in the graphic below.
· Affordable $5.00 coverage that offers meaningful catastrophic coverage for farms of all sizes.