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Governor Walker thanks dairy processors and DATCP, WHEDA staff for their hard work

Madison – Governor Scott Walker today thanked dairy processors, producers, and Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection (DATCP) and Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority (WHEDA) staff for their tireless work to help many family farms find a home for their displaced milk left in the wake of Canada’s protectionist dairy trade policies. Last month, Grassland Dairy announced it could no longer accept milk from dozens of Wisconsin farms beginning today, May 1, 2017, due to Canada’s trade violations. According to DATCP, 99% of the displaced milk has found a home.

“Our dairy industry is second to none and our producers and processors will continue to thrive, as they have for so many generations, as long as there is a level playing field,” Governor Walker said. “Canada is our largest trading partner and we want this strong relationship to continue, but we think they’re just plain wrong on this issue. Our thanks go out to dairy processors who have stepped up to help Wisconsin farmers in need. I also thank DATCP Secretary Ben Brancel and DATCP staff, as well as WHEDA Executive Director Wyman Winston and WHEDA staff for their continued hard work and support.”

Last week, Governor Walker announced the Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority (WHEDA) will provide amended loan guarantees to dairy farmers and processors with more favorable terms. Effective immediately, the loan guarantees will help Wisconsin dairy producers and processors access much-needed capital to address current market conditions. The changes provide more favorable repayment and collateral terms to farmers and increased guarantees for producers at lower fees. The loan guarantee follows Governor Walker’s request for President Trump to address Canada’s decision to unilaterally shut down the market for U.S. ultra-filtered milk.

DATCP’s Wisconsin Farm Center continues to be available to assist farmers. Contact the Farm Center at 1-800-942-2474. Wisconsin’s more than 9,000 dairy farms provide nearly 80,000 jobs and generate $43.4 billion in economic impact every year.