Report: Imports have caused producers economic harm

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The International Trade Commission released a 400-plus page report this week, which the National Milk Producers Federation says found that imports of Milk Protein Concentrate and casein are economically harming America’s dairy producers.

“This report clearly corroborates NMPF’s long-standing contention that dairy farm revenue has suffered because of the unchecked growth of these imports, and how they have adversely affected the domestic market,” said Jerry Kozak, President and CEO of NMPF.  “Contrary to the opinion of those who may not have fully read the report, the ITC’s conclusions mirror our perspective and should give members of Congress good reason to consider legislative remedies to the problems caused by unlimited imports of casein and MPC.”

Specifically, the ITC validates NMPF’s concerns about the consequential economic impact of the imported proteins in the following areas:

  1. Imported milk protein products may have displaced approximately 318 million pounds of U.S.-produced milk protein (equivalent to 883 million pounds of domestic nonfat dry milk) between 1998- 2002.
  2. These substitutable milk protein imports…contributed about 35% (353 million pounds) to the growth in USDA stocks (of nonfat dry milk) during 1996-2002.
  3. The accumulation of CCC stocks of nonfat dry milk during 1996-2002 resulted in the two USDA decisions, in May 2001 and November 2002, to adjust the dairy price support butter-powder tilt.
  4. As a result of the first tilt adjustment (in 2001)… the farm prices of milk dropped by $0.44/cwt while the 2002 tilt...gave rise to a drop in the (farm milk) price of $0.29/cwt.

Kozak said that while the ITC’s report used the term “may have” to describe the level of displacement, the ITC has confirmed that the only lingering question is the total volume of displacement that occurred during the period studied – not whether the displacement occurred in the first place.

“In fact, one of the most damning findings in the entire report is that the large majority of imported proteins are not being used for new specialty nutritional products, but instead are displacing American milk in the manufacture of processed cheese – hardly a novel product that didn’t exist a decade earlier,” Kozak said. 

For more on the NMPF, visit www.nmpf.org.

NMPF



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