Dairy Margin Coverage Sign-Up Period Continues

Sign-up is continuing for the Dairy Margin Coverage risk management program. John Berge is the acting deputy administrator of farm programs for the Farm Service Agency. He says the program is already paying out this year.

Berge says, “DMC sign-up for this year started on February 28, it ends on April 29, and payments started being issued. We had to adjust the regulation as a result of some actions by Congress. That adjustment is now done. The rule was published, and when that happened, one of the important pieces of that it’s retroactive back to January of 2024. And because those payments were triggered for January of 2024, those payments started being issued again. But going forward now, people can elect into DNC coverage going up until April 29.”

It’s open to any dairy operation in the country. Berge says, “It’s generally something that conventional dairies take advantage of. It’s a risk management tool. It helps deal with some of those uncertainties that impact the prices of milk. Last year, we put out $1.2 billion in DMC payments. It’s a pretty cheap program. It costs about 15 cents per hundredweight for the 9.50 cent coverage. That risk protection is just inexpensive. So largely, this is conventional dairies that buy into this, and again, we put out quite a little bit of payments last year.”

Berge says there are multiple coverage options. He says, “There are several different options for coverage. You can go onto our website, there’s an online direct decision tool that’s available there for people to do some homework before they go into the office and make a determination on what kind of coverage they would like. Producers have to certify with FSA that the operation is commercially marketing milk. There are several different forms that they would have available at their local county office, and then there is an administrative fee of $100. That fee is waived for farmers who are part of our either limited resource community, beginning farmers, socially disadvantaged farmers, or a military veteran.”

Producers can lock into a multi-year contract or sign up every year. For more information, go to fas.usda.gov.

Story courtesy of the NAFB News Service

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