More herds will be retired this year - Cooperatives Working Together (CWT) has just announced that it will be implementing another round of herd retirements after reviewing a number of economic benchmarks, including cull rates and cull cow prices. Bids will be accepted starting Friday, May 28 with a cutoff date of Friday, June 25.

"It is our belief that a herd retirement at this time will add to the positive momentum already building and should result in speeding up the milk price recovery already in progress," said Jerry Kozak, president and CEO of NMPF which manages CWT.

This is the tenth herd retirement since CWT began operations in the summer of 2003. The most recent was conducted in the fall of 2009.

"With beef prices very strong, and replacement cow and springer prices still relatively low, CWT has determined that it will consider bids up to, but not to exceed, $3.75 per hundredweight," noted Kozak. "However, there is no guarantee that a producer who bids at the maximum level will be selected." Producers must still bid on a per-hundredweight basis, and CWT will continue to review and accept bids, beginning from the lowest bids received, moving up toward the maximum level. Farmers whose bids are accepted are paid by CWT for their milk production, and they also retain the beef value of the cows they send to processing.

Detailed information can be found on its website, including bid forms application, an interactive bid calculator to help estimate a farmer's bid, and answers to frequently asked questions. All bids must be postmarked by Friday, June 25th, in order to be considered. All dairy producers submitting bids to sell their herds must be members of CWT effective January 2009, either through their membership in a fully participating cooperative or as an independent member of CWT.