It was a heavy day today on the #AmericaTheBountiful tour. Farm Women United organized a peoples' hearing for dairy farmers. If you haven't heard, the fact that dairy farmers (as well as farmers and fishermen in general) aren't allowed to get paid for their real cost of operation coupled with the glut of fake and cheap "dairy" on the market (MPC: milk protein concentrate), has caused a social, economic, ecological, animal rights, and food justice crisis that we all need to pay attention to whether we eat dairy or not (but especially if we do).
The focus on mega-dairy farms - including mega-organic dairy farms that are quickly becoming organic cow factories - nut juices marketed as "milk", and fake powdered "milk" products that are found in variety of shelf-stable items in the grocery stores have led to a rapid loss of dairy farmers. This is due to a lack of market for these farmers' true milk product and unfair prices for their milk.
In some cases, the dairy farmers we should care about and should be supporting are getting paid so little for their milk their only option is to sell their cows or live in financial distress or worse. The so-called "dairy cooperatives" are really a tool for mega processors to control the milk market and farmers' lives. Today was dedicated to the dairy farmers whose lives have been lost to this crisis, often at their own hands. It was a day full of testimonies from dairy farmers and others in their communities sprinkled with a few other random folks including NAMA & NFFC Director, Niaz Dorry.
"I was truly honored to be invited to share some thoughts at that the end of day about the National Family Farm Coalition's position on this issue and reflections from the tour. A humbling day for me... and an important conversation to bear witness." --Niaz Dorry