Skip to comments.Milk Co-op Mailer Address Suicide Risk for Dairy Farmers
Posted on 03/08/2018 6:39:55 AM PST by tired&retiredEdited on 03/08/2018 7:46:09 AM PST by Sidebar Moderator. [history]
Accompanying the routine payments and price forecasts sent to some Northeast dairy farmers last month were a list of mental health services and the number of a suicide prevention hotline.
The Agri-Mark dairy cooperative got the resources out to its 1,000 farmers in New England and New York following the suicide of a member farmer in January, and one the year before.
(Excerpt) Read more at dairyherd.com ...
Perhaps the story is apocryphal, but Joe Bixler talks about a Michigan dairy farmer who, when the cooperative wouldn’t take his milk for the third time, opened the valve to his holding tank and killed himself.
Bixler, who is District 10 Michigan State University Extension director, said milk and dairy prices have trended downward since about 2014 and that’s causing stress on the farm.
“On the retail end, you’ve seen prices as low as 75 cents a gallon at Aldi’s and $1.09 at Kroger,” Bixler said. “It costs on average $1.75 to produce it on the farm.
“It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out someone is losing money, and it’s the farmer.”
I drink two large glasses of milk every day. That’s all the help I can offer.
Let’s get those 5lb gummint cheese blocks going again. No, I’m serious.
Milk here in NW Florida Panhandle is ~$3.65 a gallon, and that’s at Sam’s and slightly higher at Walmart!............
Perhaps they should co-op and make ice cream, cheeses and yogurt products....................
Suicide data by occupation groups are not this discrete. It does not isolate farmers, much less type of farm.
“Growing up, I’d walk across to the farm next door, carrying an empty gallon jug, and return home with the jug filed with fresh milk.”
Too bad for the both of us that it’s not 1960 anymore. There were three small dairy farmers in less than a mile of us that had milk picked up daily by a local dairy processing plant. One of the farmers also sold raw milk to those who picked it up at his place. I only consume milk products in cooking these days so I’m not contributing to solving the problem.
No. The way the law was written, the government was/is obliged to buy all excess cheese. There were dairies and cheese factories built that deliberately created an excess....some dairies and cheese processing plants made cheese that went straight from the factory floor to a government warehouse. Some dairies never sold anything to anyone except the government....for years.
If they looked into converting their herds to A2A2 status, they would get a premium price for their milk. And if they bought some stock it would fund their conversion.
To me it is personal. I live in the middle of the California Central Valley and, given a choice, my family and I would rather trust generations old dairy families than a corporate juggernaut. In spite of the fact milk prices increased around 100% in the last 4-5 years or so. Perhaps agribusiness is already here?
As a now senior citizen I learned I was lactose intolerant, but lactose-free dairy products have allowed me to remain a cradle to grave milk drinker. I hope the East Coast and the midwest dairy consuming families feel the same way about generations old dairy families.
There is a good explanation of A1A2 status at the company website a2milkcompany.com (they have a US site)Basically about 3000 years ago there was a genetic mutation in dairy cattle that they started producing A1 proteins and A2 proteins. A2 is the natural original. More studies have shown the A1 protein is what causes the gastro distress. It’s a New Zealand company but has US headquarters in Boulder. They have 3 processing plants in the US and their milk is easy to spot A2 on the carton. They have a huge infant formula market selling to mostly China. Lots of info out there. It’s just delicious natural milk and the farmers in the US that have converted their herd get a premium price for their milk.
Here is an example of a corporate farm.
Fair Oaks Farms is owned by nine families, it is located near an interstate highway that bisects flat corn, alfalfa, and soybean fields in Indiana. Fair Oaks is one of the largest dairy farms in the United States. It houses 30,000 cows and produces enough milk to slake the thirst of the entire city of Chicago, which is located 75 miles to the north.
Until the 1970s, Americas milk products were supplied by several hundred thousand Henrys scattered across the country. But if current trends continue, the future of milk production in the country will look a lot like Fair Oakshuge operations with enough financial clout to deal on equal footing with dairy processing giants like Dean Foods and supermarket chains like Kroger. In 1970, there were 658,000 dairy farms in the U. S. By 2006, according to the United States Department of Agriculture, that number had fallen to 75,000, a drop of an astounding 88 percent. And the plunge continues. But in the same period, the number of mega-farms with more than 2,000 cows rose by 104 percent.
Unlike Henrys farm, Fair Oaks is bio-secure, meaning its off-limits to visitors and theres no scratching behind the ears of calves. But it does offer guided bus tours, so I paid the $10 entry fee, received a hot-pink wrist bracelet, and joined a group of senior citizens aboard a gleaming white bus. As one of the largest dairy farms in the United States, Fair Oaks wanted to give the public the chance to see 21st-century agriculture up close, said Tony Wiedman, the companys marketing manager.
As we cruised at a walking pace, a recorded voice reeled off statistics that were mind boggling. Fair Oaks owns 19,000 acres of landenough to accommodate 56,000 football fields. Its cows live in 10 barns (imagine airplane hangars), 3,000 per facility. Tended by a workforce of 400, they produce 250,000 gallons of milk per dayeven without the stimulation of artificial hormones, which Fair Oaks eschews. Waste from the cows is processed in a state-of-the-art digester, producing enough methane to generate all the electricity the vast farm requires.
Milking time at Fair Oaks never ends. Each cow is milked three times per day (At Henrys, as at most traditional dairies, cows are milked twice a day.) Live Oaks 10 milking parlors operate 24/7 and 365 days a year. For one hour out of eight, milking stops just long enough for equipment to be automatically cleaned.
Since it entered the grocery business it has single handedly destroyed it.
Want to know why you can’t find a 16 oz can of vegetables anymore?
Walmart... It demanded a retail price for a can, the only way to hit it was with a smaller can.. and once Walmart had that, everyone else followed.
WALMART will be purchasing its milk from cheap states without price guarantees, bottling it and shipping it out to states that have minimal price guarantees retail, making itself a big fat profit, and putting the local dairy farmers in those states out of business.
The WALMART of Sam Walton is long long gone.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.