In the United States, where they don’t have supply management like the milk marketing boards in Canada, dairy farmers’ survival is typically at the mercy of the market price. Lately that price has been driven down by decreased demand that is reportedly due to increased importation and use of milk protein concentrate, an industrial product intended for uses such as glue, but is now being used as an unapproved food additive to increase profits for big processors because it’s cheaper than buying fluid milk from farmers.
The one bright spot, the one exception to the cloud of gloom that’s settling over dairy in America is the raw milk scene. Is it any surprise that more farmers are latching onto this one chance for economic survival in the face of all that’s arrayed against them? Here’s an excerpt from David E. Gumpert’s thoughtful analysis of the business case for raw milk dairying, from a recent post on the Complete Patient blog:
“…. a new study has just come out from the Northeast Organic Farming Association examining in some detail the economic impact of raw dairies in Massachusetts. What it says is that raw dairies have more economic impact than we generally realize, and that the impact is growing rapidly. Continue reading