The Department of Agriculture recently announced assistance for dairy producers with the new Organic Dairy Marketing Assistance Program/ The program helps dairy producers mitigate market volatility, higher input and transportation costs, and unstable feed supply and prices that have created unique hardships in the organic dairy industry. USDA’s Farm Service Agency is offering $104 million in grants to dairy operations to assist with projected marketing costs in 2023, calculated using their marketing costs in 2022.
Organic dairy producers have faced significant and unique increases in their marketing costs, compounded by increases in feed and transportation costs and the limited availability of organic grain and forage commodities. FSA Administrator Zach Ducheneaux says, “Without assistance, many organic dairies, particularly small organic dairies, will cease production.” FSA will begin accepting applications for the program on May 24, 2023. Eligible producers include certified organic dairy operations that produce milk from cows, goats and sheep.