Moratorium needed on foreclosures, says marketing group

Staff writer

An agricultural marketing organization is calling for a moratorium on farm foreclosures as dairy producers face extremely low prices due to pandemic-related economic distress.
National Farmers, a milk, beef and grain marketer, is calling for the moratorium and a single federal marketing order to help with dire financial conditions for agriculture.
Paul Olson, president of National Farmers, said the dairy market is on the verge of collapse and more than 3.5 million gallons of milk are being disposed daily on farms because the food service industry has largely shut down from the pandemic.
“We cannot let market disruptions and the spread of the COVID-19 to ag and food industry employees take such a toll on farm survival,” he said. “We must have a national moratorium on farm foreclosures.”
National Farmers is calling for altering current marketing rules that govern dairy producer milk sales.
“As other dairy organizations also call for a supply management system, we suggest one single federal milk marketing order would help efficiently administer those proposals,” Olson said.
Under the National Farmers’ proposal, the current 11 federal orders would be merged into one. The proposal uses the combination of a national milk marketing order and new pricing premiums to add value to the first one million pounds per month produced by all farms.
“Our plan would use a reformulation to pay an additional $4 per hundredweight on the first one million pounds,” Olson said. “This could immediately assist producers who face losing their farms because of the coronavirus.”


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