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Sign-up for extended milk income loss contract program underway

March 28, 2006

Colleen Cashell, executive director for USDA's Farm Service Agency in Washington County, announced that dairy producers have until May 17 to sign up for the extended Milk Income Loss Contract program.

"From Oct. 1, 2005, through Aug. 31, 2007, a dairy operation's monthly payment will equal the milk quantity sold in that month multiplied by 34 percent of the difference between $16.94 per hundredweight and that month's domestic class I milk price," said Cashell. "The 2002 Farm Bill originally set the payment rate factor at 45 percent."

Program payments are to begin following sign-up. Participating dairy operations must select the month they want to start receiving payments for eligible production, Cashell said.

Producers may retroactively select any month from last December through this May for sign-up. Sign-up will continue after May 17 throughout the program's duration.

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However, Cashell said, after May 17, producers will not have the option to select a retroactive month for payment for which the payment rate has already been announced.

"FSA will make payments on an operation-by-operation basis, up to a maximum of 2.4 million pounds of milk produced and marketed by the dairy operation per fiscal year," Cashell said.

Eligible dairy producers are those who commercially produce milk in the United States. To receive program approval, producers must enter into a contract with USDA's Commodity Credit Corp. to provide monthly marketing data.

Dairy producers can apply at local FSA offices and online at www.fsa.usda.gov/dafp/psd.

The Washington County FSA office is in Suite 107 at 1260 Maryland Ave., Hagerstown.

More information is available in the FSA MILCX fact sheet online at www.fsa.usda.gov/pas/publications/facts/html/mile06.htm.

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