NMPF Makes Progress on Future Direction of CWT Program

NMPF’s Senior Vice President Chris Galen explains for Dairy Radio Now listeners the series of changes that NMPF is reviewing to improve the effectiveness of its self-help program, Cooperatives Working Together. A member task force has been assessing ideas to revamp the program and expand its export activities starting in 2025.

CWT Renewal Effort Establishes Three Expert Working Groups

The task force of farmers and cooperative leaders working on a new vision for Cooperatives Working Together established three working groups in May to develop specific recommendations on revamping the self-help program.

The three groups, composed of cooperative staff experts, include Product Mix; Bid Process Adjustments; and Market Development. The first two groups are examining the types of products CWT allows members to submit bids for, as well as how the bidding process is conducted between member coops and CWT staff. The third is engaging in a bigger-picture assessment of business opportunities that CWT may wish to pursue that will achieve the program’s overall goals. Each team will assess ways to make the overall program more effective in 2025 and beyond.

The CWT Task Force also agreed to be guided by three tenets that reflect its overall mission to:

  • Promote exports of critical dairy products to support domestic market balance and producer prices;
  • Promote U.S. dairy’s reliability in international markets by helping mitigate price gaps between the U.S. and alternative suppliers for critical dairy products; and
  • Promote long-term U.S. export success through building international demand for U.S. dairy.

The task force was formed earlier this year to consider how the CWT program should evolve in the future to better meet the needs of its members. It’s generating ideas to present a series of potential extensions of CWT’s current operations to the NMPF Board of Directors for approval.


May CWT-Assisted Export Sales Nearly 13.5 Million Pounds

CWT member cooperatives secured over 41 contracts in May, adding 13.5 million pounds of product to CWT-assisted sales in 2024. In milk equivalent, this is equal to 105.8 million pounds of milk on a milkfat basis. These products will go to customers in Asia, Central America, the Caribbean, Middle East-North Africa, Oceania and South America and will be shipped from May through December 2024.

Exporting dairy products is critical to the viability of dairy farmers and their cooperatives across the country. Whether or not a cooperative is actively engaged in exporting cheese, butter, anhydrous milkfat, cream cheese, or whole milk powder, moving products into world markets is essential. CWT provides a means to move domestic dairy products to overseas markets by helping to overcome U.S. dairy’s trade disadvantages.

The amounts of dairy products and related milk volumes reflect current contracts for delivery, not completed export volumes. CWT will pay export assistance to the bidders only when export and delivery of the product is verified by the submission of the required documentation.

CWT Assists with 364,000 Pounds of Dairy Product Export Sales

ARLINGTON, VA – Cooperatives Working Together (CWT) member cooperatives accepted five offers of export assistance from CWT that helped them capture sales contracts for 86,000 pounds (40 MT) of American-type cheese, 88,000 pounds (40 MT) of whole milk powder and 190,000 pounds (85 MT) of cream cheese. The product is going to customers in Asia and Middle East-North Africa and will be delivered from May through November 2024.

CWT-assisted member cooperative year-to-date export sales total 41.2 million pounds of American-type cheeses, 309,000 pounds of butter (82% milkfat), 769,000 pounds of anhydrous milkfat, 11.8 million pounds of whole milk powder and 4.1 million pounds of cream cheese. The products are going to 26 countries in five regions. These sales are the equivalent of 526 million pounds of milk on a milkfat basis.

Assisting CWT members through the Export Assistance program positively affects all U.S. dairy farmers and cooperatives by fostering the competitiveness of U.S. dairy products in the global marketplace and helping member cooperatives gain and maintain world market share for U.S. dairy products. As a result, the program has helped significantly expand the total demand for U.S. dairy products and the demand for U.S. farm milk that produces those products.

The amounts of dairy products and related milk volumes reflect current contracts for delivery, not completed export volumes. CWT pays export assistance to the bidders only when export and delivery of the product is verified by required documentation.

###

The Cooperatives Working Together (CWT) Export Assistance program is funded by voluntary contributions from dairy cooperatives and individual dairy farmers. The money raised by their investment is being used to strengthen and stabilize the dairy farmers’ milk prices and margins.

CWT Renewal Effort Focusing on Future Needs

Efforts to rethink and renew the Cooperatives Working Together program in the past month have focused on obtaining information about the breadth of products that are currently manufactured by CWT’s members. More than a dozen organizations provided information about their product mix, data that will be kept private but will help guide future decisions made on CWT’s product mix.

The task force of farmers and cooperative leaders guiding the program’s renewal will examine CWT’s key strategic pillars, including encouraging higher market prices and enhancing U.S. dairy export long-term growth.

The task force, formed earlier this year to consider how the CWT program should evolve in the future, will also assess specific adjustments to the program in the areas of product mix modification, bid process adjustments, and market development support. The task force will continue to meet virtually to refine these concepts and propose detailed proposals to the NMPF Board.


CWT April Committed Product Volume

CWT member cooperatives secured over 60 contracts in April, adding 9.6 million pounds of product to CWT-assisted sales in 2024. In milk equivalent, this is equal to 88.6 million pounds of milk on a milkfat basis. These products will go to customers in Asia, Central America, the Caribbean, Middle East-North Africa, Oceania and South America and will be shipped from April through September 2024.

CWT Assists with 922,000 Pounds of Dairy Product Export Sales

ARLINGTON, VA – Cooperatives Working Together (CWT) member cooperatives accepted ten offers of export assistance from CWT that helped them capture sales contracts for 101,000 pounds (50 MT) of American-type cheese, 150,000 pounds (70 MT) of anhydrous milkfat, 66,000 pounds (30 MT) of whole milk powder and 604,000 pounds (275 MT) of cream cheese. The product is going to customers in Asia, Central America, the Caribbean, Middle East-North Africa and South America, and will be delivered from May through July 2024.

CWT-assisted member cooperative year-to-date export sales total 37.8 million pounds of American-type cheeses, 309,000 pounds of butter (82% milkfat), 767,000 pounds of anhydrous milkfat, 8.5 million pounds of whole milk powder and 3.9 million pounds of cream cheese. The products are going to 27 countries in five regions. These sales are the equivalent of 469.1 million pounds of milk on a milkfat basis.

Assisting CWT members through the Export Assistance program positively affects all U.S. dairy farmers and cooperatives by fostering the competitiveness of U.S. dairy products in the global marketplace and helping member cooperatives gain and maintain world market share for U.S. dairy products. As a result, the program has helped significantly expand the total demand for U.S. dairy products and the demand for U.S. farm milk that produces those products.

The amounts of dairy products and related milk volumes reflect current contracts for delivery, not completed export volumes. CWT pays export assistance to the bidders only when export and delivery of the product is verified by required documentation.

###

The Cooperatives Working Together (CWT) Export Assistance program is funded by voluntary contributions from dairy cooperatives and individual dairy farmers. The money raised by their investment is being used to strengthen and stabilize the dairy farmers’ milk prices and margins.

CWT Task Force Assesses Member Export Capabilities

The task force of farmers and cooperative leaders leading the initiative to renew Cooperatives Working Together in late March issued a survey to NMPF’s members seeking data about the products they manufacture, and also feedback on the value of CWT to their organization and the broader dairy community.

The task force, formed earlier this year to consider how the CWT program should evolve in the future to better meet the needs of its members, is generating ideas to present a series of potential extensions of CWT’s current operations to the NMPF Board of Directors for approval. The survey sent to NMPF cooperatives CEOs seeks information about the type and volume of products manufactured by the membership. The resulting data will be analyzed to assess the potential for expanding the range of products that CWT supports.

Other ideas for CWT’s future activities include expanding the demand for new and different products in foreign markets and improving the collective logistics efficiencies of members’ supply chain processes. The task force will continue to meet virtually to refine these concepts and propose detailed proposals to the NMPF Board.

March CWT-Assisted Export Sales Total 9.5 Million Pounds

CWT member cooperatives secured over 70 contracts in March, adding 9.5 million pounds of product to CWT-assisted sales in 2024. In milk equivalent, this is equal to 96.9 million pounds of milk on a milkfat basis. These products will go to customers in Asia, Central America, the Caribbean, Middle East-North Africa, Oceania and South America and will be shipped from March through August 2024.

Exporting dairy products is critical to the viability of dairy farmers and their cooperatives across the country. Whether or not a cooperative is actively engaged in exporting cheese, butter, anhydrous milkfat, cream cheese, or whole milk powder, moving products into world markets is essential. CWT provides a means to move domestic dairy products to overseas markets by helping to overcome U.S. dairy’s trade disadvantages.

The amounts of dairy products and related milk volumes reflect current contracts for delivery, not completed export volumes. CWT will pay export assistance to the bidders only when export and delivery of the product is verified by the submission of the required documentation.

CWT Assists with 3.9 Million Pounds of Dairy Product Export Sales

ARLINGTON, VA – Cooperatives Working Together (CWT) member cooperatives accepted 35 offers of export assistance from CWT that helped them capture sales contracts for 3.5 million pounds (1,600 MT) of American-type cheese, 51,000 pounds (23 MT) of anhydrous milkfat and 309,000 pounds (140 MT) of cream cheese. The product is going to customers in Asia, Middle East-North Africa and South America, and will be delivered from March through June 2024.

CWT-assisted member cooperative year-to-date export sales total 28 million pounds of American-type cheeses, 163,000 pounds of anhydrous milkfat, 7.1 million pounds of whole milk powder and 2.5 million pounds of cream cheese. The products are going to 24 countries in five regions. These sales are the equivalent of 334 million pounds of milk on a milkfat basis. Over the last 12 months, CWT assisted sales are the equivalent of 1.004 billion pounds of milk on a milkfat basis.

Assisting CWT members through the Export Assistance program positively affects all U.S. dairy farmers and cooperatives by fostering the competitiveness of US dairy products in the global marketplace and helping member cooperatives gain and maintain world market share for U.S dairy products. As a result, the program has helped significantly expand the total demand for U.S. dairy products and the demand for U.S. farm milk that produces those products.

The amounts of dairy products and related milk volumes reflect current contracts for delivery, not completed export volumes. CWT pays export assistance to the bidders only when export and delivery of the product is verified by required documentation.

 

###

 

The Cooperatives Working Together (CWT) Export Assistance program is funded by voluntary contributions from dairy cooperatives and individual dairy farmers. The money raised by their investment is being used to strengthen and stabilize dairy farmers’ milk prices and margins.

 

NMPF’s Castaneda Discusses WTO, India, CWT

NMPF Executive Vice President Jaime Castaneda discusses efforts to expand dairy market access at recent World Trade Organization meetings in Abu Dhabi in an interview with the Red River Radio Network. Castaneda also discusses trade relations with India and the importance of the NMPF-led Cooperatives Working Together program for the future of U.S. dairy exports.

CWT Assists with 5.2 Million Pounds of Dairy Product Export Sales

ARLINGTON, VA – Cooperatives Working Together (CWT) member cooperatives accepted 41 offers of export assistance from CWT that helped them capture sales contracts for 4.4 million pounds (1,970 MT) of American-type cheese and 827,000 pounds (375 MT) of cream cheese. The product is going to customers in Asia, Central America, the Caribbean, Middle East-North Africa and South America, and will be delivered from March through June 2024.

CWT-assisted member cooperative year-to-date export sales total 24.5 million pounds of American-type cheeses, 112,000 pounds of anhydrous milkfat, 7.1 million pounds of whole milk powder and 2.2 million pounds of cream cheese. The products are going to 24 countries in five regions. These sales are the equivalent of 298 million pounds of milk on a milkfat basis. Over the last 12 months, CWT assisted sales are the equivalent of 968.4 million pounds of milk on a milkfat basis.

Assisting CWT members through the Export Assistance program positively affects all U.S. dairy farmers and cooperatives by fostering the competitiveness of US dairy products in the global marketplace and helping member cooperatives gain and maintain world market share for U.S dairy products. As a result, the program has helped significantly expand the total demand for U.S. dairy products and the demand for U.S. farm milk that produces those products.

The amounts of dairy products and related milk volumes reflect current contracts for delivery, not completed export volumes. CWT pays export assistance to the bidders only when export and delivery of the product is verified by required documentation.

###

The Cooperatives Working Together (CWT) Export Assistance program is funded by voluntary contributions from dairy cooperatives and individual dairy farmers. The money raised by their investment is being used to strengthen and stabilize the dairy farmers’ milk prices and margins.

CWT Task Force Explores Program’s Future

NMPF’s task force of farmers and cooperative leaders met several times in recent weeks to consider a range of ideas as the program faces renewal this year.  The task force, formed earlier this year to consider how the CWT export assistance program should evolve in the future to better meet the needs of its members, is generating ideas to present a series of potential extensions of CWT’s current operations to the NMPF Board of Directors for consideration and approval.

Ideas discussed so far include support to develop new products in new markets, expand the range of products exported and sold in overseas markets, and improve the shipping and logistics capabilities needed to export U.S. dairy products.  The task force will continue to meet virtually in the spring to flesh out concepts and propose detailed proposals to the NMPF Board.

CWT February Committed Product Volume

Cooperatives Working Together Critical for U.S. Dairy’s Future

Let’s say it plainly: Exports are critical to the future of U.S. dairy, and dairy cooperatives that point themselves toward benefiting from exports will gain additional opportunities to thrive. That’s why one of NMPF’s most important projects this year is rethinking and renewing its Cooperatives Working Together program. CWT has played a major role in boosting U.S. dairy exports and increasing milk prices for all producers in recent years. It promises to become even more significant in the future as its reach and resources potentially expand.

For those less familiar with the program, here are the basics: It’s a voluntary, marketing-focused program managed by NMPF and funded by CWT participating member cooperatives that boosts U.S. dairy product sales and strengthens relationships with overseas customers by helping participating cooperatives weather the ebbs and flows of international markets. Increasing overseas sales helps U.S. producers grow new markets. It also helps them sell products abroad that otherwise would stay at home, which better aligns supply and demand for everyone, regardless of where their milk is marketed. And by pooling resources to build member exports, CWT is a classic example of the self-help cooperative spirit in action.

Trade is the central way U.S. dairy producers have been able to find markets for production that’s grown faster than U.S. mouths can consume it: 17 percent of U.S. milk is now being shipped overseas in some form, up from 13 percent in 2010. CWT has significantly assisted that expansion. Last year, despite global economic challenges and sluggish international demand, CWT member cooperatives secured 553 contracts overseas, representing 58.4 million pounds of American-type cheeses, 1.1 million pounds of butter, 46,000 pounds of anhydrous milkfat, 39 million pounds of whole milk powder and 9.1 million pounds of cream cheese. In milk equivalent, that equals 922.1 million pounds on a milkfat basis.

Other than cheese, every product included in CWT saw its volume of sales supported by the program increase in 2023, including a 73 percent gain in butter and a 27 percent jump in whole milk powder. CWT-supported sales also reached more countries than the year before, thriving both in places where the U.S. is establishing itself as a reliable partner and in new destinations where CWT has encouraged buyers to take a closer look at U.S. dairy. All of this shows how CWT is a proven winner for U.S. dairy, one that, even in challenging years, shows growth and greater potential.

That’s where we stand, heading into a pivotal year for the program.

CWT is renewed every three years, and 2024 is a renewal year in that cycle. We have exciting opportunities this time around to enhance CWT’s export assistance program, including expanding the number of products supported. We have also initiated conversations about how CWT could help member sales through means other than providing direct export support, such as providing logistical, manufacturing and marketing support. To generate ideas and assess the merits of various innovative proposals, we’ve convened a task force of experts from our cooperatives to identify what the collective investment in CWT can achieve.

Membership is open to any dairy cooperative – most, but not all, members are part of NMPF – and its business benefits outweigh its membership costs. Every cooperative has good reason to join: Larger, established co-ops can use export assistance to solidify and expand sales and markets, while co-ops less acquainted with the international arena can use CWT to help them break in, knowing they have the backing of an established, successful way to reach foreign markets.

CWT can help co-ops keep their bottom lines healthy, and they can provide impetus for expansion. It’s been helping everyone in dairy for years by encouraging demand that lifts the entire industry, driven by the cooperatives who effectively use it.

As this conversation unfolds, we’re both interested and eager to gain input that both improves CWT’s value for current members and encourages new ones to join. Cooperatives Working Together gives its members an advantage in facing dairy’s future, and it’s an important asset to the entire industry. We’re excited to see where we can take it in its next chapter. Thank you for any help you can provide.


Gregg Doud

President & CEO, NMPF

 

CWT Assists with 1.2 Million Pounds of Dairy Product Export Sales

ARLINGTON, VA – Cooperatives Working Together (CWT) member cooperatives accepted five offers of export assistance from CWT that helped them capture sales contracts for 1.1 million pounds (490 MT) of American-type cheese and 112,000 pounds (50 MT) of anhydrous milkfat. The product is going to customers in Asia, Central America, the Caribbean and Middle East-North Africa, and will be delivered from March through June 2024.

CWT-assisted member cooperative year-to-date export sales total 20.1 million pounds of American-type cheeses, 112,000 pounds of anhydrous milkfat, 7.1 million pounds of whole milk powder and 1.3 million pounds of cream cheese. The products are going to 18 countries in five regions. These sales are the equivalent of 251.4 million pounds of milk on a milkfat basis. Over the last 12 months, CWT assisted sales are the equivalent of 933.8 million pounds of milk on a milkfat basis.

Assisting CWT members through the Export Assistance program positively affects all U.S. dairy farmers and cooperatives by fostering the competitiveness of US dairy products in the global marketplace and helping member cooperatives gain and maintain world market share for U.S dairy products. As a result, the program has helped significantly expand the total demand for U.S. dairy products and the demand for U.S. farm milk that produces those products.

The amounts of dairy products and related milk volumes reflect current contracts for delivery, not completed export volumes. CWT pays export assistance to the bidders only when export and delivery of the product is verified by required documentation.

 

###

The Cooperatives Working Together (CWT) Export Assistance program is funded by voluntary contributions from dairy cooperatives and individual dairy farmers. The money raised by their investment is being used to strengthen and stabilize dairy farmers’ milk prices and margins.