MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — An insurance program to help hard-pressed dairy farmers is expected to be ready for enrollment in June, the U.S. Farm Service Agency says, but farmers say it won’t tackle their underlying challenges.
Dairy farmers are in their fifth year of low milk prices that have driven thousands out of business.
Describing the dairy farmers’ situation as urgent, 38 U.S. senators signed a letter last month urging the Department of Agriculture to implement the insurance program and work to educate farmers about their options.
The improved insurance program in the 2018 farm bill expands the coverage levels for farmers. They pay premiums and receive payments when the gap between milk prices and feed prices reach a certain level.
“USDA is working diligently to implement the DMC program and other programs authorized by the 2018 Farm Bill,” FSA Administrator Richard Fordyce said Monday.