USDA secretary asked to help increase milk prices

Visalia Times Delta

A group of 61 members of the U.S. Senate and House have sent a letter to U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack asking him to take action to raise prices dairies across the country are paid for their milk.

“We write today to express our concern about the troubling economic challenges facing U.S. dairy farmers and the entire U.S. dairy industry,” states the letter sent Thursday by lawmakers that included California Sen. Barbara Boxer and Rep. Jim Costa, D-Fresno.

Milk prices have been on a decline nationally since 2009, though they did peak briefly to record-high levels in 2014 before declining again.


California dairies have been particularly hard hit by the declining milk prices, as the state has its own pricing system that dairy operators here have complained gives them less money for their milk than dairies in most other states get under the federally-run milk-pricing system.