Farm Bill Now Campaign Pushing for Congressional Action This Month

September 11, 2012

NMPF has joined forces with nearly 40 other farm and agricultural groups in a coalition called “Farm Bill Now,” whose purpose is to get Congress to pass a new, comprehensive, five-year farm bill before current programs expire at the end of September.

The Farm Bill Now coalition comprises associations representing commodity crops, livestock, specialty and minor crops, farm cooperatives and financial groups.

“National Milk stands united with these other groups – each of which has strong and distinct policy priorities – yet all of whom are committed to passing a new, comprehensive bill this year,” said Jerry Kozak, President and CEO of NMPF. “Dairy farmers have been working for three years on developing a new and better safety net, and we need a new farm bill to bring that effort to fruition.”

Farm Bill Now has launched an interactive web portal at, through which visitors can connect to their members of Congress and show their support for a new five-year farm bill. Using messages to Congress via social media, event locations and times, and an online petition, gives both farmers and consumers the resources they need to make their voices heard, telling Congress that the farm bill needs to be completed before the current farm food law expires in September.

One focal point of the collective effort will be a Capitol Hill rally this week. On Wednesday, Sept. 12, at the Capitol Reflecting Pool, farm leaders and key members of Congress will gather to encourage Congress to pass a Farm Bill. Now that Congress has returned to Washington this week, there are fewer than 10 legislative days on the calendar to debate legislation prior to the anticipated end of the congressional session.


CWT Assists with Export Sales Totaling 12.2 Million Pounds in August

September 11, 2012

Cooperatives Working Together (CWT) received 76 requests for export assistance from member cooperatives in August. Of those requests, CWT accepted 42, which accounted for sales of 10.6 million pounds of cheese, 1.6 million pounds of butter, and 44,092 pounds of anhydrous milk fat. On a milkfat basis, those exports are the equivalent of 118.1 million pounds, or the annual production of 5,600 cows.

For the year, CWT has helped member cooperatives to sell 79.1 million pounds of cheese, 56.7 million pounds of butter, and 123,459 pounds of anhydrous milk fat. Those products are equivalent to 1.969 billion pounds of milk on a milkfat basis, or the annual production of 93,700 cows.

Through the end of August, CWT will have accounted for 55.5 million pounds of total American cheese export shipments, with another 24.8 million pounds scheduled to be shipped by the end of the year.


Former YC Chairman Honored for Environmental Stewardship

September 11, 2012

In recognition of his dedication to environmental stewardship on his dairy farming operations, NMPF’s 2010 Young Cooperator (YC) Chairman Marty Burken was selected last month as a recipient of the 1st annual Iowa Farm Environmental Leader Awards. The awards were sponsored by the Iowa Governor’s Office, Iowa Department of Agriculture & Land Stewardship, Iowa Department of Natural Resources, and Monsanto. Burken was chosen because of the steps he has taken and leadership he has demonstrated to help protect Iowa’s natural resources. The nomination was approved by a committee representing multiple commodity, conservation, and environmental groups.

The awards were presented at the Iowa State Fair on August 17th by Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey, Iowa Governor Terry Branstad, and Iowa DNR Director Chuck Gipp.

In the photo: Burken receives his award from Gov. Terry Branstad. He is joined on stage by his youngest daughter Hillary and his father Loran Burken.


Registration Available for NMPF Annual Meeting

September 11, 2012

With less than two months to go, dairy farmers are encouraged to register soon for the 2012 annual meeting that NMPF hosts jointly with the National Dairy Promotion and Research Board and the United Dairy Industry Association. The meeting will be held October 29 – 31 at the Walt Disney World Dolphin Hotel in Lake Buena Vista, FL.

With the theme of “Securing Dairy’s Future,” the meeting offers attendees several days of informative programming, in addition to opportunities to interact and network with dairy producers and industry leaders from across the country. Dairy producers, cooperative staff, Young Cooperators (YCs), industry suppliers, trade press, and others from within the dairy sector are all invited to attend.

Individual and group meeting registration, along with hotel reservations, can be made online at Although online registration is preferred, a registration form may also be filled out and submitted via mail or fax. Online, mail, and fax registration must be submitted with payment by Friday, October 5. Visit for more information.