Farmers say farm bill fight over dairy subsidy overhaul ended with acceptable compromise

MILWAUKEE – Dairy farmers say they’re pleased that a long fight over federal dairy subsidies has ended with a compromise farm bill.

Farmers say the compromise legislation is fair and will be effective in keeping their farms from going under during hard times.

The bill overhauls dairy subsidies, which farmers say has been sorely needed for years. Farmers got squeezed in 2009 by low milk prices and high feed costs and many went under.

The federal government currently pays farmers if the price of milk sinks below a certain point, but it doesn’t consider their costs.

The legislation would scrap that program in favour of subsidized insurance to pay farmers when the difference between milk and feed prices becomes too small to cover their other expenses.