Dairy producers here and around the country could sidestep a repeat of the industry’s 2009 oversupply crisis, says U.S. Sen. Patty Murray., D-Wash.
Murray has co-sponsored the newly introduced Dairy Price Stabilization Act with Vermont Sens. Bernie Sanders and Patrick Leahy. The bill is designed to prevent volatility in milk prices by requiring the U.S. Department of Agriculture to determine the market’s growth capacity every three months.
Producers who exceed the percentage increase allowed by the USDA would pay a fee, which would be distributed to all farmers. The dairy industry suffered nationwide in 2009 when oversupply caused prices to fall below the cost of production.
Washington is the 10th largest dairy producer in the country, including a handful of local operations.