(June 29, 2012) June Dairy Month is winding down, but July should provide plenty of fireworks over dairy policy and pricing issues throughout summer. DairyProfit Weekly’s Dave Natzke reported on Friday’s Dairyline some of those topics:
Dairy cattle feed generally makes up more than 50% of a dairy farmer’s costs to produce milk, and two USDA reports to be released on Friday morning could go a long way in determining corn and soybean prices for the rest of the summer. USDA releases its Crop Acreage report, putting final estimates on spring plantings of major crops; and a Grain Stocks report, estimating current grain inventories.
Is manure a hazardous waste? That was the issue at a House subcommittee on environment and the economy hearing this week. H.R. 2997, called the Superfund Commonsense Act, introduced by Representative Billy Long, Republican from Missouri, clarifies that livestock manure is not included as a “hazardous substance” under two federal laws primarily designed to address hazardous waste at industrial sites. Walter Bradley, government and industry relations representative for Dairy Farmers of America, testified that concentrated animal feeding operations are already subject to multiple state and federal laws, including the federal Clean Water Act and Clean Air Act. Long’s bill is identical to S. 1729, introduced in the Senate by Republicans Roy Blunt of Missouri and Mike Crapo of Idaho.
Finally, you’ll probably see a lot of members of Congress back home at Fourth of July parades next week, but the House Ag Committee will be taking up its version of the 2012 Farm Bill when members return to Washington, July 11. The Senate approved its Farm Bill proposal last week, and Congress must come up with a new Farm Bill before the current law expires in September.