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IDFA Commends Policy Reform But Opposes Supply Mgt

11 June 2010

US - The International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA) has commended the National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) for its commitment to long-term dairy policy change.

Connie Tipton, President and CEO of the IDFA said that the IDFA applauds NMPF's support for a margin insurance programme.

"Replacing outdated safety net programmes for dairy producers, like price supports, with a program that will help our producers have a more reliable income makes a lot of sense.

"The health of the US dairy industry depends on the financial viability of our milk producers and processors. This margin insurance program, coupled with new risk management tools to better manage price swings, will go a long way to allow the US dairy industry to remain competitive, both with dairy ingredients in the domestic market and the growing world dairy trade.

"Unfortunately, not all of the elements of the plan are forward-looking. The plan's Dairy Market Stabilisation Programme, which is intended to increase prices and limit growth, will have dire consequences for our industry and consumers.

"Supply management will decrease demand for dairy products and dairy ingredients, and will drive low-cost non-dairy substitutions in foods and restaurants across the country.

"Supply management will limit industry growth at a time when demand for US dairy exports is growing, and we have a unique opportunity to innovate and expand to serve global markets.

"As an industry we are much more effective when we work together, and IDFA is pleased that there are many areas where we can work together with NMPF in this plan. We look forward to continued collaboration that will eliminate the programs that prevent our markets from working, provide a better safety net for producers and make sure everyone in the milk market has the risk management tools needed to manage price volatility."

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