Source: United States House of Representatives – Representative Randy Feenstra (IA-04)
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Rep. Randy Feenstra (R-Hull) led – alongside U.S. Rep. Brad Finstad (R-MN) – a letter to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Tom Vilsack, and the Administrator of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Farm Service Agency, Zach Ducheneaux, urging the Biden administration to swiftly open the sign-up period for Iowa dairy farmers to enroll in the 2024 Dairy Margin Coverage (DMC) program. The DMC program is the top risk management tool for American dairy farmers.
This program helps protect dairy farmers in Iowa and across the country from inflation, keep more of their hard-earned money in their pockets, and navigate market uncertainty both at home and abroad.
In part, the lawmakers wrote, “Throughout 2023 our producers faced numerous challenges – high input costs, continued inflation, and unpredictable weather conditions to name a few – meaning that programs like DMC, which provide certainty during unstable economic conditions, are vital to our producers and rural communities. Last year, margins for our dairy producers were at the smallest they’ve been since the DMC program began, and DMC was a crucial tool to hedge risk. Our nation and farm economy rely on the hard-working people that dedicate their lives to feeding and fueling the world, and we need to ensure they have the risk management tools they need to succeed.”
“Now, as we are nearly halfway through January, there continues to be no indication given to producers of when they will be eligible to select their DMC coverage level for 2024. This delay in DMC enrollment coupled with the already unpredictable nature of the industry is concerning for the farm economy and the constituents we represent. Transparency and communication are needed from USDA as the enrollment period continues to be delayed,” the lawmakers continued.
Feenstra continues to be a strong supporter of the dairy industry. Last month, he voted for the Whole Milk for Healthy Kids Act, which would overturn an Obama-era rule and allow our schools to serve nutritious whole milk to their students.
Feenstra also spoke out against Canada’s tariff-rate quota, which violates the spirit of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement and unfairly restricts American dairy products from accessing Canadian markets.
You can find the full letter HERE.