We’re continuing to work on gathering more information on what’s happening with the announcement by Grassland Dairy Products out of Greenwood this week that approximately 75 Wisconsin dairies will be without a market come May first. You can listen to conversations on other pages on our website.
In a conversation with Goedhart Westeress, Vice President of Business Development at Grassland, we learned the following:
** Grassland was informed by their Canadian contractor on Tuesday, March 30th, that due to changes in Canadian dairy pricing, they would no longer accept the ultra filtered milk that Grassland had been shipping to them.
** On Thursday, April first, the last load of Grassland product went into Canada – at that time the contract was terminated.
** Grassland made the decision to continue collecting milk until May first. At that time they will stop accepting the milk and begin to furlow or terminate employees within their plant.
**Grassland WILL honor all forward contracts previously made with dairies without exception.
**Grassland is continuing to search for partners that can accept the milk they cannot.
**None of the dairies that are being cut had a written supplier contract with Grassland, a common practice to allow dairies to move quickly if another processor would offer a better price.
**There are currently still more than 700 Wisconsin dairies that are continuing to send milk to Grassland.
In a conversation with Wisconsin Ag Secretary Ben Brancel, we learned:
**He is visiting personally on an hourly basis with all milk processors in Wisconsin and outside the state looking for ways to place the displaced milk.
**Due to confidentiality – the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture is unaware of all the dairies that are involved in the Grassland announcement. Any dairy that’s been notified needs to contact the WI Dept. of Agriculture Farm Center Hotline to be kept up to date on any developments pertinent to milk placement and assistance. 800-942-2474 or email at [email protected]
**There is a tentative meeting being scheduled for next week by Governor Scott Walker involving dairy handlers and processors.
**All dairies – regardless of their involvement with the Grassland situation – are being encouraged to talk to their ag lenders and keep lines of communication open. Impacted dairies especially need to beginning planning what happens and what’s available after May first.
**Continue to contact your federally elected representatives and senators stressing the need for immediate action.
Please continue to share any information that you may receive. [email protected] or 877-301-3276
We’ll continue to update you as new information becomes available.