A couple of weeks ago I had the opportunity to talk to a newspaper reporter about our industry. He had contacted me originally to discuss the price of hay. By the end of the conversation we had moved from the price of hay to the fact that neighbors of ours across the state are going out of business from current market conditions. During our conversation, a few inaccuracies came to light about milk pricing and how the public has a misconception that we directly can set the price for our milk. We also discussed the fact that rural America is not insulated from the global economy that we live in today. A farm in Belen, Clovis, or Roswell can be affected by drought or rain in Australia as well as the economic crisis in the European Union.
I am sure most of us can remember patterns or cycles that the industry has taken over the past decades. I can remember my father talking about booking your proteins in the spring or that $12 milk meant $1200 springers. We could count on good milk prices in the fall because school was starting up. Most of this seems to have gone by the wayside. Downturns and upswings have become more volatile and severe. We have had to adapt to survive. So why have our government regulations, policies, and programs continued to lag? This seems to be a million dollar question. Currently there are wheels that are in motion to make some changes, but decisions are being made for our industry by people in Washington that do not have the faintest idea of what happens on todayís dairy farms. The best that we seem to be able to hope for is a result that is palatable and maybe somewhat fair. So please educate your legislators, as will we, about our industry and what we need to survive.
Donít forget next month to join us in Ruidoso for our annual convention.