June 7, 2018
The board of directors of the National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) has voted to extend funding through 2021 for Cooperatives Working Together (CWT), the farmer-funded export assistance program that assists member cooperatives in exporting dairy products.
CWT’s three-year extension comes at a time of growing U.S. milk production, weak global dairy prices and increased worldwide competition. The program enables farmers to fund a private enterprise that increases the competitiveness of U.S. dairy exports. NMPF developed and manages the 16-year-old self-help program.
“CWT is a unique and highly cost-effective tool for America’s dairy farmers, and the ongoing commitment of America’s dairy cooperatives to the program sends a signal to dairy producers at home, and dairy exporters abroad, that the United States will maintain a strong competitive stance in the global dairy market,” said NMPF chairman Randy Mooney, a dairy farmer from Rogersville, Missouri.
CWT is a voluntary membership program funded by contributions from NMPF’s member cooperatives and more than 100 individual farmers. The funds raised from the CWT membership fee of $0.04/cwt. help maintain U.S. exports in an increasingly competitive world market.
CWT’s member cooperatives submit bids requesting help with sales in specific foreign markets. After independent review and justification, bids are either accepted or CWT makes a counteroffer. Financial assistance is provided only after the sale is completed.
Through the first five months of 2018, CWT has facilitated the sale of 56 million pounds of dairy products, representing the equivalent of 648 million pounds of milk. Since the export assistance program’s inception in 2003, it has helped members sell 887 million pounds of dairy products, the equivalent of more than 11.1 billion pounds of milk.
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