Sorry, the 2017 Corn Day event pre-registration deadline was February 10, 2017 (54.80.68.137).


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First Cutting Forage Quality Project

The CNY Dairy, Livestock and Field Crops Team has begun monitoring hay fields for our First Cutting Forage Quality Project. If you aren't familiar there is a very good correlation between alfalfa height and the level of Neutral Detergent Fiber in not only alfalfa but also grasses.

The team monitors fields throughout our region in May to give forage producers some idea of the optimal time to harvest that important 1st cutting. When to start varies as much as 2 weeks in our region depending where you are, elevation and soil type. Check out the Forage Quality section of our website for more information.  

Click here to go directly to 1st Cutting Quality Updates.


2018 Revised Margin Protection Program (MPP) Dairy (deadline 6/1/18)

Questions & Answers by David R. Balbian, M.S., PAS - Area Dairy Management Specialist, Cornell Cooperative Extension

Q. Who is eligible to participate in the revised MPP program?

A. If you are commercially marketing milk as of the day you sign up for the program, you are eligible to participate in the program. It doesn't matter if you have participated in this program in the past or if you are a "new producer" with no production history in 2011, 2012, or 2013 (years used to establish your production history). There are mechanisms in place to establish a production history for your situation. Contact your local Farm Service Agency office for the details. Sign up anytime from April 9 until June 1, 2018.

Q. What is the cost to participate in the program?

A. It all depends on the level of margin protection that you choose and whether or not you fall into Tier 1 or Tier 2 coverage. The maximum cost for an $8.00 margin coverage under Tier 1 is $0.142/cwt. for up to 5 million pounds of coverage. That cost was $0.475/cwt. in the past.

Tier 2 coverage (over 5 million pounds) costs $1.36/cwt. for the $8.00 margin coverage. You can cover from 25% to 90% of your production history. If your production history is 20 million pounds, you could cover 25% of it (5 million pounds) under Tier 1. If your production history is over 20 million pounds, the local FSA office can run some projections to help you determine if the revised program will be beneficial to you. There is also a $100 administrative fee, regardless of the coverage chosen.

Q. Where are they getting prices used in the revised MPP?

A. The same sources are being used as have been the past. The National All Milk Price is being used from NASS (National Ag. Statistics Service). The corn price and alfalfa hay price is from AMS (Agricultural Marketing Service). The soybean meal price is from Central Illinois as reported by AMS.

Q. What is the likelihood of the program paying off this time? I participated in the past & was very disappointed.

A. The likelihood of the program paying off (at the $8.00 coverage level) is EXTREMELY HIGH. As of this writing (4/24/18), the Program on Dairy Markets and Policy website projects (for a farm with a 5.2 million pound production history) that the premium & administrative fees would be $7,200, the expected payments would be $20,073. That would net you $12,873 after expenses. In fact, if you want to be certain of it's paying off, you might want to wait until late May before you sign up. At that time, we will know what the margins will be for January, February, March, and April. Since the coverage is retroactive until January 1, you will know in advance, what the payback will be. At this time, projections indicate it is EXTREMELY LIKELY that the payout will exceed the premium cost (for Tier 1 Coverage). By waiting until late May, you will know WITH 100% CERTAINTY of the payback. At that time, it will be a no-brainer!

Q. If it looks like a near guarantee financially I want to participate, but I am really short of cash. I do not have the money to pay the premium. What should I do?

A. Your local office can accommodate your situation. They can help you fill out form CCC-36. This allows your premium to be deducted from any program payments before you receive them. Once the premium is covered, you receive the balance of the payment and any future program payments.

Q. I plan to sell my cows and I am going to get out of the dairy business. Can I still participate in this program?

A. As long as you are still commercially marketing milk on the day that you sign up for the program, you are eligible to participate in the program. Communicate with your local FSA office as soon as possible to work out the details BEFORE you sell the cows. This program could still be beneficial to you.

The official rules & regulations for this program are administrated by the Farm Service Agency. The above information is for informational purposes only. Communicate with your local Farm Service Agency for additional details not included above and for information pertaining to your own situation.

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