Pennsylvania Farm Bureau (PFB) recognized the Pennsylvania Milk Marketing Board (PMMB) for maintaining the Class I over-order premium price for milk at $1.60 per hundredweight and for continuing the current fuel adjuster for the six-month period beginning April 1, 2016.

“The board thoughtfully reviewed all the testimony and evidence presented by stakeholders in making the decision to maintain the existing premium price for milk,” said PFB President Rick Ebert.  “We will continue to monitor declining milk prices, which are challenging the profit margins of dairy farmers.”

During testimony before PMMB earlier this month, Farm Bureau noted that dairy farmers are not only getting paid less for the milk they produce, but the margin between what they are paid and the cost to produce the milk is increasing.

“Frankly, the price for feed, fuel and other inputs have not declined at the same rate as the significant reduction in milk prices we’ve experienced over the past two years,” said Somerset County dairy farmer Glenn Stoltzfus, who is a member of PFB’s State Board of Directors and chairman of its state Dairy Committee.  “This means dairy farmers are likely to face tougher times ahead as they struggle to remain economically viable.”

Farm Bureau notes that the over-order premium is essential to assisting Pennsylvania dairy farmers during times of uncertainty and falling prices.

“The level of premium established by the Board plays an important and helpful role in the financial stability of Pennsylvania’s dairy farms,” concluded Stoltzfus.

The over-order premium and the fuel adjuster add-on mandated by PMMB are assessed on Class I (fluid) milk that is produced, processed and sold entirely within Pennsylvania, which is the fifth largest dairy producing state in the nation.