Looking for hope: N.M. dairyman plans milk dump

SALEM, Ohio — A New Mexico dairy farmer is asking for help across the country in organizing a national milk dump.

Dairy farmer

Deborah Stark, of Clovis, N.M., said the last year in the dairy industry has started her on a mission and now she needs some help.

In a statement released to media and dairy farmers, she said is that action is necessary and the action is a nationwide milk dump. She contends that it has been a success in Belgium and other European countries and now it is necessary for U.S. dairy farmers to do it.

Date set

The national milk dump day is set for Feb. 7.

“This is a perfect time of year when demand is high and supply is low,” Stark said.

Spreading the word

Stark said she has gotten calls from dairymen in New York and Pennsylvania. She is hoping the word spreads and farmers band together so they can all stay in business.

“Everyone is hurting across the board and there is no reason for it,” Stark told Farm and Dairy.

The dairywoman added it’s the same story across the United States and that the only part that changes is the state’s name.

She said some farmers who have been in the business all of their lives lost more in one year than many ever thought possible.

“There are many who lost 30 years of equity in one year,” Stark added.

“This country needs to ask what is going to happen if a farmer can’t make a good living, what is going to happen. We’ll have to import all of our food from other countries,” Stark said.

Speak up

Stark is worried that if dairy farmers continue to be complacent or feel like giving up, they will, and the industry will suffer even more.

“If they don’t become involved, they may as well curl up in a fetal position and let themselves become sitting ducks, because they are being plucked off one by one,” Stark said.

Consumer awareness

Stark said she is also trying to make consumers aware of who is actually making money from the milk produced. She said although the price of milk and other dairy products are increasing at the grocery store, it does not mean that dairy farmers are reaping the benefits.

“The consumer must be made aware that the high prices he pays for dairy products does not mean high profits for the actual producers of milk, but high profits for a few large corporate players, such as Dean Foods,” Stark said.

She hopes the countrywide milk dump Feb. 7 will draw attention to the dairy industry crisis and will generate some interest in finding ways to save dairy farms.

More Information.

To get the details about the milk dump, contact Debbie Stark at 909-632-6577 or by e-mail at moostark4@aol.com.

About the Author

Kristy Foster Seachrist lives in Columbiana County raising sheep and horses. She earned her degree from Youngstown State University and has worked in both print and broadcast journalism. You can follow her on Twitter at http://twitter.com/fosterk96. More Stories by Kristy Foster Seachrist

11 Comments

  1. This is so sad… How worthless these animals lives are to the industry. All that suffering for millions of gallons of their body fluids to be trashed like “waste”.

    What suffering? Of course there is the constant impregnation – The endless grief of never being able to nurse your own young, because your young are stolen from you so the milk can be stolen as well…

    Mastitis, udder infections, arthritis, lameness, confinement, being injected with drugs, fed unnatural foods… Then the “early retirement” when the cows are no longer productive.

    The calves? Some being slaughtered with your umbelical cords still attached? Never knowing the taste of your mother’s milk – or her warmth…

    It’s a dispicable industry. Furthermore “dairy products” are one of the most unhealthy, fat laden things a human can consume.

    Human milk is for human babies. Cow’s milk is for calves.

    Dump your milk, no rational or compassionate person would want it anyway.

  2. Harry says:

    Bea Elliott: You have it all wrong. My cows go outside every day. They go out on pasture (grass) during the warm months. They do NOT have mastitis, arthritis, etc. you named. Their umbelical cords are not attached (that would be impossible – since the umbilical cord releases at birth inside the womb – like all births, including humans). Calves are fed warm milk immediately after birth to ensure they are healthy. Dairy products are NOT unhealthy, cheese, yogurt, skim milk are some of the best things you can eat that provide minerals like calcium, and a good source of protein. Have you ever been on a dairy farm? Do you even know any dairymen? Maybe you should come see my farm, so you can learn a few things about the dairy industry.

  3. CM says:

    Bea : What world are you from? Your comments show a COMPLETE Ignorance on your part as to what the US dairy industry is. Yes, cows are bred, but this would DEFINATELY happen in nature-when cows cycle, they are ready and LOOK to be bred, and no healthy bull will look the other way. Every dairyman I know immediately feeds the newborn calves the first milk from the mother. Dairy cows,for the most part, are very poor mothers and care little when the calves are taken(I have seen many instances where the mother attacks and even kills her own calf)

    Dairy cows are pampered and live a better life than most people. Your portrayal of their ailments is twistedly false. Milk is the most nutritious foods available. You choose to be a vegetarian-which is your right. However, you DO NOT have a right to tell others what they can eat. Your comment about dairies being dispicable is as rude and nasty as we dairy farmers calling you vegetarians “soybean murderers” and “plant killers”. Everyone has their own opinions,but this world would be a much better place if everyone acknowleged that and quit trying to impose your beliefs on others.

  4. Barb Jones says:

    Bea Elliot: Your words read like the sermon preached by animal right organizations, namely PETA, HSUS, and their ilk. Do you have an original thought ? Think about it, if dairyman, and livestock owners were so unconcerned with their property (yes animals are property) do you think they would be in business very long? Take Harry’s offer, go to his farm, and see for yourself the work, and care that goes into producing food for the American public.

  5. Jared says:

    LEts send all the extra cheese and powder piling up in warehouse to Haiti instead of dumping milk. Wouldn’t that be a much better idea. Tell your co-op leaders this and start a push!!!

  6. david stark says:

    all this is besides the point what my mother is trying to do is show some sort of standard for the way we get paid for our product. the dairy industry may very well be up there with the most corrupt industries out there. the dairy industry needs to unite and use the 60,000 farmers in the country to push for restructure. the way things are going north america will not have a dairy industy at all.

  7. Barb Jones says:

    Jared: Haiti? What about AMERICAN food banks, AMERICAN seniors, AMERICAN children? Our resources should be used for our Country….

  8. Linda Medley says:

    Wow you all go way off the subject, I am a farmer, the price of grain, and hay has affected the ability for a farmer to make any money on his product. We work hard to make money, not loose it!
    The hours are long,the work is hard, there is no easy days. I thought of this the other night when I was out helping my husband get the round bales in to the heard in the below zero temperatures, as my fingers felt as though they would fall off. The price of gas has also hit every farmer that I know. Being a farmer is not a just a job, it is your entire life. People need to realize that a dairy farmer is actually loosing money hand over fist so that the general public has dairy products. Hopefully this can draw attention to that fact. We need to support all American Businesses, or we will loose it all. Keep America Strong! Support your farmers!!!!!

  9. Jared says:

    Dairy farmers keep getting blamed for making to much milk. Too much product goes into inventory. I say instead of dumping milk, get it out of the warehouses.

    I don’t really care where it goes…it could go to US foodbanks, or Haiti.

  10. Allen says:

    Hello Bea!have you ever been on a farm?do you know all the hard work that is put in everday?we live eat and breath our hard work.we get what we put into it.imagine walmart or any other big box store losing money like we have!ag and industry are the backbone of this country,at least it used to.we keep shipping all our jobs overseas and importing dairy products and other food.this country could support itself if it wasnt ran by money hungary people.

  11. august says:

    u now wis lost about 30% of dairy farms in the last 5 yrs and more r going out every day it is nor right i my area there was about 10 farms in a 20 mi now about 8 r left

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