Magazine article Rural Cooperatives

More Dairy Farms Adopt FARM Care Practices

Magazine article Rural Cooperatives

More Dairy Farms Adopt FARM Care Practices

Article excerpt

Dairy farmers nationwide continue to demonstrate widespread adoption of industry standards that assure high-quality care for their animals, according to a report released by the National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF). The summary report quantifies practices by farmers participating in the industry's responsible care program, known as the National Dairy FARM Program (Farmers Assuring Responsible Management).

"The latest report shows dairy farmers continue to demonstrate their extensive commitment to the well-being of the animals in their care through adherence to the standards in the FARM program," says Jamie Jonker, NMPF's vice president of scientific and regulatory affairs. The report quantifies the results of more than 12,000 dairy farm evaluations conducted during the previous three years. All of the data is collected by second-party evaluators who visit each of the farms.

Overall participation in the FARM Program has increased to more than three-quarters of the nation's milk supply, up 5 percentage points from the previous year.

To ensure full participation in the program, NMPF's board recently voted to require that each dairy marketing organization participating in the program must enroll all of its farmer-suppliers. NMPF Chairman Randy Mooney hailed the unanimous vote, saying it sends a clear message that the program must not be implemented selectively if it is to continue demonstrating the universal value and integrity of the FARM program. …

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