USDA extends deadline for dairy Margin Protection Program

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WASHINGTON — The USDA has extended the deadline for the dairy Margin Protection Program. Farmers now have until Dec. 5, 2014, to enroll in the voluntary program, established by the 2014 farm bill.

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack made the announcement Oct. 29, speaking at the National Milk Producers Federation annual meeting in Texas.

The program provides financial assistance to participating farmers when the margin — the difference between the price of milk and feed costs — falls below the coverage level selected by the farmer.

“We want dairy producers to have enough time to make thoughtful and well-studied choices,” said Vilsack.

Vilsack encouraged producers to use the online Web resource at www.fsa.usda.gov/mpptool to calculate the best levels of coverage for their dairy operation.

“Historical scenarios also can be explored to see how the Margin Protection Program would function should poor market conditions occur again in the future,” said Vilsack.

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