A workshop for dairy managers on the new dairy will be held Monday, Oct. 6, at Farm Credit Services, 1600 Old Red Trail, Mandan.
U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack announced Aug. 28 that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has finalized the rules for the Margin Protection Program for Dairy (MPP-Dairy). Sign-up begins on Tuesday, Sept. 2, and runs through Nov. 28, 2014, for the upcoming year.
However, sign-ups for future years will take place from July 1 to Sept. 30 for each year. Unless renewed by future farm bills, MPP-Dairy will sunset on Dec. 31, 2018.
This is a national voluntary dairy safety net program that was included in the 2014 farm bill. This is the equivalent of federal crop insurance for milk. MPP- Dairy represents a monumental shift in federal dairy policy. It replaced three federal programs: Dairy Product Price Support, Dairy Export Incentive and Milk Income Loss Contract (MILC).
This is the most comprehensive reform that federal dairy policy has seen in decades. The legislation has no definitive answer to a farm's level of participation; it is a case-by-case decision. The Farm Service Agency has been charged with administering the program. Producers have two forms to complete:
- CCC-781, which will establish a dairy farm's production history
- CCC-782, which will document the coverage level, or how much milk you want to insure
The USDA also has launched a Web tool to help producers determine the level of coverage through MPP-Dairy that will provide them with the strongest safety net under a variety of conditions. The online resource, http://www.fsa.usda.gov/mpptool, allows dairy farmers to combine unique operation data and other key variables quickly and easily to calculate their coverage needs based on price projections.
All dairy producers should consider attending the Oct. 6 meeting. If you cannot, an abbreviated version will be presented at the Dairy Convention on Nov. 5.
However, waiting until then will leave limited time to decide on your level of participation.
I am coordinating the workshop on Oct. 6. The workshop will start at 10 a.m. and be presented by Marin Bozic, an assistant professor at the University of Minnesota who has been actively involved in educational delivery to dairy farmers in a multistate area. Also on hand will be Brad Olson, farm program director, and Jay Hochhalter, program specialist, both from the North Dakota FSA, who will address the intricate details of MPP-Dairy sign-up and participation.