2020 | May 8 GMP E Newsletter
Georgia Milk Producers Weekly Enews
GA Milk will host a Georgia Dairy Zoom meeting on Tuesday at 4 p.m., and on Thursday with The Dairy Alliance at 4 p.m. If you would like to join in - please email Farrah Newberry at gamilkproducers@gmail.com . A summary of the zoom meetings are emailed to producers following each call.

Georgia Milk has updated their website for farmers to use as a resource:
Kroger brings milk giveaway campaign to Augusta today
Kroger comes to Augusta today with its campaign to deliver 24,000 half-gallons of Georgia-produced milk to health care workers and first responders across the state.

The Great Georgia Give arrives in Augusta at noon with a media kick-off event at the Children's Hospital of Georgia, the third stop of the four-week campaign.

“Now more than ever, preventing waste in the food chain is crucial,” said Kroger Atlanta Division President Tim Brown. “The Great Georgia Give aligns with Kroger’s Zero Hunger | Zero Waste social impact plan to end hunger and eliminate waste in our communities by connecting a great product with great heroes.”
The Great Georgia Give will be delivering milk to health care workers at University Hospital, Augusta University Medical Center, Children's Hospital of Georgia and to Augusta’s first responders, including the North Augusta Police Department. Read more here>>>
Borden Dairy, dairymen and The Dairy Alliance Team Up to Provide More Milk in Thomas County
From The Dairy Alliance

The Dairy Alliance provided Thomas County funding for refrigerated truck rentals that will be used throughout the month of May to distribute half gallons of milk to families in need. A special thanks to  Borden Dairy  for helping make this all possible. Ted Trotter, local Georgia dairy farmer, alongside  Thomas County School System  Nutrition staff and volunteers handed out 2,900 half gallons of milk this week and will hand out a total of 11,600 half gallons in May.
By: Ken Anderson , Brownfield Ag News

Livestock groups and farm state lawmakers have been pressuring the USDA to raise or even eliminate the payment limitations requirement for the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP).

Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue tells Brownfield they got the message.

“We’ve heard from many members of Congress on both sides of the aisle indicating they think those payment limits are too stringent. We agreed with them and we’ve adjusted those payment limits–and we’ll see those when the rules come out,” Perdue said.

He did not say what those new limits would be. Under the 2018 farm bill, the payments were capped at 125,000 dollars per affected commodity or a maximum of 250,000 dollars per operation.

DTN reports that USDA has sent the final CFAP rule to the Office of Management and Budget for review . Listen to Report Here >>>
COVID-19 Pandemic Producer Survey
From UGA Center for Agribusiness and Economic Development

During this pandemic, we recognize that Georgia’s food and fiber industry is being impacted across all agricultural sectors. In order to accurately tell your story and represent your needs, we have developed a survey to collect information on how the COVID-19 crisis is affecting your farm operation. The survey is a joint project of the Georgia Department of Agriculture, Georgia Farm Bureau, The Georgia Foundation for Agriculture and UGA Center for Agribusiness and Economic Development.
The survey is to be completed only once for each farm/ranch operation. Your name will NOT be recorded for each survey record completed. All information will be kept strictly confidential. You may choose whether to participate in the survey, and you may withdraw at any time. There is no personal compensation provided for participation. The Qualtrics survey system uses data encryption, so there is minimal risk that security of any online data may be breached.
If you are agricultural producer located in the state of Georgia, please take the time to complete this short 10 minute survey. As an industry, it is critical that we work together to evaluate the needs of our farming community during this time.
If you have any questions about this project, contact the following investigator:
Kent Wolfe, UGA Center for Agribusiness and Economic Development
Cell: 706-688-9858

Thank you for your cooperation.

More Milk Cows Are Ending Up as Hamburgers in Latest Virus Twist
By  Jen Skerritt  and  Michael Hirtzer , Bloomberg
More U.S. dairy farmers are sending their cows to be turned into hamburgers after the coronavirus reduced demand for milk and boosted retail demand for cheap beef.

Even with the meatpacking industry beset by shutdowns, the number of milking cows sent to slaughter has risen 2.3% in the past four weeks, according to INTL FCStone. Processors are paying a premium amid surging demand for affordable cuts from shoppers weathering the pandemic at home, said Dave Kurzawski, senior broker at the firm in Chicago. Read more here>>>
Justice Department Approves Sale of Dairy Producer Amid Antitrust Concerns
By Joe Harris, Courthouse News Service
In a move that could transform the dairy industry, the Department of Justice on Friday  approved  the sale of most of the assets of Dean Food Company to the Dairy Farmers of America, given that the co-op divests itself of some dairy processing plants.

The approval comes in the form of a consent decree that was filed with an federal antitrust  lawsuit  in Chicago.
The $433 million acquisition by the Dairy Farmers of America, the fourth largest dairy cooperative on the planet, could make it the largest dairy company in the United States. Some experts say it will allow DFA to control up to 70% of the country’s milk production.

According to the agreement with the DOJ, the Dairy Farmers of America will hold separate and ultimately divest the dairy processing plants in DePere, Wisconsin; Franklin, Massachusetts; and Harvard, Illinois, together with certain assets related to the operations at each plant. Additionally, Eric Beringause has agreed to step down as president and chief executive officer of Dean Foods. Read more here>>>
There’s no disputing the dairy farmer income destruction as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. There is, however, some good news emerging for producers and the dairy supply chain, according to presenters on a Professional Dairy Producers of Wisconsin  The Dairy Signal podcast , May 5.

Comparing pre-COVID-19 (about Jan. 20) milk futures prices to prices on April 20, estimated 2020 U.S. dairy farm income fell about $10 billion, with Wisconsin dairy farm income down $1 billion, said Mark Stephenson, director o f dairy policy analysis at the University of Wisconsin – Madison.

The good news, said Stephenson, is that U.S. prices are competitive on global markets, and products are moving into exports. In addition, recent dairy product purchase announcements by the USDA and strong sales of dairy at retail are providing support to higher prices and in some cases, boosting Class III milk futures prices as much as $2 per hundredweight (cwt) in nearby months. While still far short of the $6-$7 per cwt lost since late January, Stephenson said he believes prices have come out of the deepest trough . Read more here>>>
Virus Blame Muddies China Trade | CoBank Knowledge Exchange Brief
As COVID-19 blame escalates between the U.S. and China, first quarter data reveals that agriculture exports to China are the lowest since 2007. This will make it all the more difficult to meet phase one agreement obligations for this year. On a better note, dairy futures prices for the fall months are looking up and the recent surge in crude oil and gasoline prices is boosting ethanol prices.
Farmer to Farmer Support Program Available for SE dairy farmers
 Farmers across the Southeast are experiencing uncertain times like never before. All aspects of agriculture have been hit by market losses due to COVID-19, but dairy has reached a level of uncertainty that many have never experienced.

As we navigate through these next few months, dairy producers across the Southeast have come together to introduce the "Farmer to Farmer Support Program." If you find that you need support or would like to talk to a fellow farmer or industry friend, they have several volunteers that are willing and able to help. Georgia Milk Producers has also put together a packet on the program that you can access by clicking  here

For more information on the program, please reach out to Farrah Newberry at gamilkproducers@gmail.com. 
Kroger, Publix Work to Rescue Dairy Product
By  Kat Martin  , Winsight Grocery Business

As the coronavirus pandemic has upended the foodservice supply chain, many dairies and farmers have been left in the lurch with no one to buy their products. While some farmers and dairies have had to resort to plowing over fields full of crops or dumping milk, retailers have joined in to help get that food to where it can do some good: food banks, which are under increased demand as more Americans are losing jobs and becoming food insecure just as donations have begun to dry up. According to Feeding America, an estimated 17.1 million additional people will experience food insecurity due to school closures and rising unemployment during the pandemic.

The Kroger Family of Companies partnered with its dairy cooperative suppliers and farmers to launch an expanded Dairy Rescue Program that will process and donate about 200,000 gallons of additional milk to Feeding America food banks and community organizations through the end of August, uplifting its  Zero Hunger Zero Waste  initiative. 

The Dairy Rescue Program expands on an existing partnership model between Kroger and its dairy cooperative suppliers to direct even more fluid milk—one of the most requested but harder-to-stock items at food banks—to food-insecure communities. Through the expanded program, during the pandemic dairy cooperatives will donate surplus milk normally sold to restaurants, schools and hotels, while Kroger will donate the processing and packaging of the donated milk. Additionally, in some areas, Kroger's logistics team will also donate the transportation of the milk to local food banks. The program previously donate a combined 129,900 gallons throughout the year, but now Kroger's dairy processing plants and suppliers will be donating an additional 50,000 gallons of milk per month to local food banks and community organizations.
Beef Marketing Margins
By Jayson Lusk, Agricultural Economist, Purdue University
We are currently running at 35% to 40% below last year’s beef processing capacity due to COVID19-related shutdowns and slowdowns. As, I’ve previously noted , wholesale beef prices are rising as a result. At the same time, cattle prices have been taking a hit.
Here are USDA data from the Livestock Marketing Information Center showing the change in fed cattle price (the 5-market average steer price, over 80% choice) and wholesale choice boxed beef price since the beginning of the year. Since January, wholesale beef prices are up 67% but live cattle prices are down 24%. R ead more here>>>
Georgia’s Ag Industry Launches ‘Now More Than Ever, Buy Georgia Grown’ Campaign
From the GA Department of Agriculture

To help mitigate potential losses due to the COVID-19 response, Georgia Department of Agriculture’s Georgia Grown program has joined up with partners from Georgia Farm Bureau, University of Georgia Extension Service and Georgia Fruit and Vegetable Association to promote Georgia Grown produce through retail and direct-to-consumer channels. Georgia’s spring fruit and vegetable harvest has an estimated farm gate value of $500-$750 million, and roughly 50% of that is traditionally marketed through foodservice. However, with much of the foodservice channel closed due to the COVID-19 response, farmers could find their promising crops have no place to go.

“The supply is there. The food is there. The quality is there. We just need to make sure the demand is there as well,” says Georgia Agriculture Commissioner Gary W. Black. “Consumers often ask what they can do to help our Georgia farmers and the answer is simple. Expect Georgia Grown, ask for Georgia Grown and buy Georgia Grown.”

A mixed media campaign will encourage consumers to Buy Georgia Grown, Now More Than Ever. The collaborative effort includes PSAs, direct to consumer purchasing platforms, recipes. and preservation tips for fresh produce, all supported by a targeted social media campaign using the hashtags #NowMoreThanEver, #BuyGeorgiaGrown. Read more here>>>
Dairy Foods Innovation: Single-Serve, Grab-and-Go Will be the New Norm for Schools, Cafeterias and On-the-Fly Dining
By Donna Berry, Berry on Dairy
As the world starts to heal and reopen—fingers crossed it goes well—dairy foods manufacturers need to rethink about the products they offer through various foodservice channels. Let’s jump to August when school cafeterias and university dorm dining halls hopefully reopen. And from now until then, think about foodservice in grocery stores and urban bodegas. Don’t expect to see any functioning salad bars or hot buffets. The same for self-serve soup and condiment stations.

Currently hotels that formerly offered complimentary self-serve breakfasts now provide to-go bags. This will likely continue for some time. Evening receptions have been cancelled. Lounges are closed. These channels need solutions from food and beverage marketers because consumers are loyal to hotels and airlines for their perks.

There’s no doubt we will be in packaging overload. Smart materials companies are working on more environmentally friendly solutions. Recycled and repurposed packaging will become necessary. Convenience and portability will be paramount.

Now’s the time for dairy processors to get creative with their packaging suppliers. Make the container work for the product. Read more here>>>
Other Stories to Check Out This Week >>>
Upcoming Events >>>
GA Dairy Classifieds

UPDATED 5/1/20

WANTED: Peter's Cattle Co. will buy any dairy, beef, and cross, bottle or weaned, bulls, heifers or free martins. Pick up weekly 7 days a week. Chris- 470-255-8515

For Sale: Corn Silage - For more information contact Carlin Giesbrecht at 478-494-4007

FOR Sale: Stretch-O-Matic Bale Wrapper and Mover. For more information contact Carlin Giesbrecht at 478-494-4007

Bull Calves WANTED:  Competitive pricing with 6 day a week pickup. Brandon Mason Cattle Company 912-632-4490

For Sale: Custom manure application and Dryhill manure equipment sales.  Contact Edwin @ 478-299-0717 with Agboys Custom Services LLC -  New 8"x52' lagoon pump with outriggers $24,000 (Pictured right)

FOR HIRE : Custom Silage Harvesting. Late model JD chopper. Will travel. Let me put your quality forage up! Nic Haynes, Muddy H Farms, 678-617-3379.

FOR SALE :  We have a continuous selection of fresh and springing heifers.   Call William at   (706) 768-2857  or visit our website at   crumpdairyreplacements.org