2018 Enrollment for MPP Dairy Safety Net Program Will Open from April 9-June 1

Following an Agriculture Department announcement that it would re-open the enrollment period for the dairy Margin Protection Program (MPP), NMPF encouraged producers to review the new coverage options available under the improved program, which will open for sign up on April 9 and close June 1.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced on April 3 that it would re-open the sign-up period, and encouraged producers to take a second look at the new program since it had been revised under the Bipartisan Budget Act passed by Congress in February. NMPF thanked Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue for the agency’s prompt implementation of a re-opened sign-up period and other much-needed changes to the MPP.

According to USDA, dairy producers must select new coverage for 2018, even if they enrolled during the previous sign-up period last fall. Coverage choices made this spring for calendar year 2018 will be retroactive to Jan. 1, 2018. All dairy operations desiring coverage must sign up during the eight-week enrollment period. USDA also announced that dairy producers can participate in either MPP or the Livestock Gross Margin program for dairy (LGM-Dairy), but not both.

The changes to the MPP were part of a larger dairy package that was included in the disaster spending bill passed by Congress two months ago. The provisions included increasing the first tier of covered production from four million pounds to the first five million pounds of a farm’s annual milk production history, and reducing the supplemental coverage premium rates on the first tier.  The disaster package also lifted the $20 million annual cap on all livestock insurance, including the Livestock Gross Margin (LGM) program. This change will enable USDA to develop additional dairy risk management programs that can be provided to producers.

USDA’s web tool allows dairy farmers to quickly and easily combine unique operation data and other variables to calculate their coverage needs based on price projections. NMPF’s Future for Dairy website also offers informative resources and tools to help farmers determine the best insurance options for their operations.