FarmFirst Dairy Cooperative launched a new Young Cooperator program, providing young producers within the cooperative a chance to gain leadership skills and knowledge of a cooperative structure while networking with other producers.

“With such a strong focus on its members, the cooperative has wanted to establish a program for young producers for quite some time,” says Julie Martin, Director of Communications and Marketing. “The cooperative has experienced quite a few changes in the past few years, and is ready to have more, younger members get involved. This new program allows that to happen.”

The program is designed to allow all member producers ages 18-40 to participate, and will be led by a Steering Committee of Young Cooperators. This Steering Committee will be comprised of a producer or producer couple from each district of the cooperative membership, and together will collaborate and share ideas on events to be held for its Young Cooperator members. Their focus will be to develop leadership opportunities while simply giving members the chance to network and learn about other producers’ operations. The program will also focus on effectively conveying their concerns to legislators and connecting with consumers.

“This new member program will provide ample opportunities for younger producers to focus on the skills they want to enhance, especially leadership and communication skills,” says Martin. “It puts our Steering Committee members in the driver’s seat of the program, honing in on the activities they believe to be most valuable to producers at this time in the industry.”

Information regarding FarmFirst Dairy Cooperative’s Young Cooperator program is available online at http://www.farmfirstdairycooperative.com/young_cooperator_program.php. For additional information or questions, contact Julie by calling 608-244-3373 or emailing jmartin@farmfirstcoop.com.

FarmFirst Dairy Cooperative was established in 2013 and is based in Madison, Wis. Dedicated to its family farm members, the cooperative represents farms in Wisconsin, Minnesota, South Dakota, Michigan, Iowa, Illinois and Indiana through policy bargaining, dairy marketing services, laboratory testing opportunities and industry promotion. Learn more about FarmFirst Dairy Cooperative by visiting: www.FarmFirstDairyCooperative.com.