Late last week the USDA announced that the enrollment period is now open for dairy farmers to sign up for the Updated Margin Protection Program. The previous Margin Protection Program did not perform well for dairy farmers. So, the margin Protection Program was updated and was included in the Bipartisan Budget Act that was passed earlier this year.

The Updated Margin Protection program protects dairy farmers by paying them when the difference between the national all-milk price and the national average feed cost (margin) drops below a certain dollar amount selected by the dairy farmer. Dairy farmers must sign up for the program by June 1, 2018 even if they were enrolled during the previous 2018 signup period. The coverage election chosen will be retroactive to January 1, 2018.

I do not know all the details about the Updated Margin Protection Program but I have heard it is very much improved over the original program. All dairy farmers are encouraged to stop by their Farm Service Agency office. The staff can explain all the details about the Updated Margin Protection Program.