In times of supply chain disruption, how do I manage excess raw milk on my farm?

Learn about options that exist for reducing milk production and proper land application and storage of raw milk.

In spring 2020, consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in temporary milk processing plant disruptions, school closures, and decreased ability for producers to ship milk off their farm for further processing. In some cases, this has led to the need for farms to manage their excess raw milk. With that in mind, many dairy producers are asking what options exist regarding raw milk management from both an agronomic and environmental standpoint.

Michigan State University Extension  created a factsheet, “Supply chain disruptions in the dairy industry” to help guide producers in the state of Michigan with recommendations for appropriate handling of excess raw milk on the farm. The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) has also created a guidance document titled Guidance for Emergency Management of Raw Milk, which is referenced in the MSU Extension factsheet. The factsheet address diverting and reducing milk production, non-permitted vs. permitted farms, land application of raw milk, and utilization and disposal of raw milk.

If there are further questions, please contact MSU Extension environmental management educators  Sarah Fronczak or Erica Rogers.  

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