Since the last Udder Report we have had a few changes in proposed policy and regulations in our industry. First on the state level, after numerous years and countless tuberculosis tests, APHIS has determined that our state is now at Accredited Free status, otherwise commonly known as “TB free.” Dr. Fly and the Livestock Board have asked for our input on how to best monitor tuberculosis within the state. So if you have any suggestions, please contact the office or a board member.
There have also been some changes and advancements to Foundation for the Future. It has officially become a bill and has a new name. House Bill 3062 is now known as the Dairy Security Act. More importantly it was introduced as a bipartisan bill and has the potential to gain support on both sides of the aisle. Within the bill, there were a few modifications. While it still does away with the Milk Income Loss Contract (MILC), the Dairy Product Price Support Program (DPPSP), and the Dairy Export Incentive Program (DEIP), now the supply management part of the program is only required if you enter into the margin protection program, which makes it voluntary. This is good news for those producers who are planning to grow. There are a few more important changes, and I encourage you to read about them, as well as a new effort to put the same kind of language into the Farm Bill. A summary of the changes and the new Farm Bill language is available at www.futurefordairy.com. Due to the size of our family farms here in the Southwest, there is always concern that we will be treated inequitably, as we have been with the MILC and DPPSP. The DPNM Board voted to support the Dairy Security Act as written with no bias based on size or region of farms.
As you know, the FDA is moving forward with their program to test milk for pharmaceutical residues. DPNM is helping NMSU Extension and AgriLife hold additional residue prevention and animal welfare trainings. Please attend these important workshops, along with your appropriate employees.
Also this month we are conducting our district meetings. Please join us for an update on what Beverly, Kaye, and Susan are doing on your behalf and bring along another producer who might not be a member to show them what DPNM is all about.
Again if there is anything that we can do for you, please let me, a board member, or the office know.