Dairy Farmers of America, the nation's largest dairy cooperative, issued the following statement Friday morning:

“Dairy Farmers of America has reached a settlement agreement in a portion of the class action lawsuit regarding DFA’s trading activity on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange in 2004.

“Under the terms of the settlement with the class of direct purchasers of dairy products, filed this week, DFA makes no admission of wrongdoing and will pay $46 million to the plaintiff class.

“Our farmer leadership and management team have worked diligently to put certain old issues behind us and resolve pending litigation. Recently we were able to settle a class action lawsuit in the Southeast United States. Resolution of both of these lawsuits allows us to remove a source of distraction for our leadership and to avoid additional legal fees.

“The payment of the settlement will not affect the Cooperative’s day-to-day operations or its ability to market members’ milk and pay them a competitive price for that milk. Member milk checks and the member equity program will not be impacted.”