With the signup deadline for the Dairy Margin Coverage (DMC) program quickly approaching on September 20, NMPF urges all dairy farmers to enroll in the program. The DMC is guaranteed to pay all producers enrolled at the maximum $9.50/cwt. coverage level for at least every month of production this year through July, according to USDA data.
The latest enrollment numbers indicate that 68 percent of dairy operations with an established production history have enrolled so far for this year. This represents more than 18,000 producers nationwide.
“Dairy farmers want their income to come from the market. But given continued poor prices through the first half of this year DMC payments will provide welcome certainty for farmers,” said Jim Mulhern, NMPF President and CEO. “DMC offers better support for dairy farmers than its predecessor, the Margin Protection Program. It’s worthwhile for every farmer.”
Created in the 2018 Farm Bill, the DMC offers a much more robust safety net for dairy producers of all sizes. Improvements include:
- Affordable higher coverage levels that permit all dairy producers to insure margins up to $9.50/cwt. on their Tier 1 (first five million pounds) production history.
- A new option for producers to receive a 25 percent annual discount on their premiums if they agree to lock in their coverage for the five-year period of this Farm Bill. Producers are still able to pay premiums annually even if they elect the five-year discount.
- An improved feed-cost formula, which includes dairy quality hay values and better reflects the true cost of feeding dairy cows.
- Affordable $5.00 coverage that lowers premium costs by roughly 88 percent, creating a more meaningful catastrophic-type coverage at a reasonable cost for larger producers without distorting the market signals needed to balance supply with demand.
NMPF has a resource page on its website with more information about the program, including a brochure, which summarizes key facts about the DMC. “Time for sign-up is running out,” Mulhern said. “Anyone who hasn’t enrolled yet should contact their local USDA Farm Service Agency office immediately to gain the benefits of the DMC program.”