(Host) Vermont dairy farmers are finally going to get emergency financial assistance from Washington.
Congress approved $290 million in aid to farmers earlier this fall, but the money was just released by the White House.
(Copess) "We expect that money to start moving into accounts within the next two weeks."
(Host) Jonathan Coppess is the administrator of the Farm Service Agency at the U.S. Agriculture Department.
The money is intended to help farmers get through what has been one of the most difficult years in recent memory. But Coppes concedes it won’t be enough to make up for their losses.
(Coppess) "Well, unfortunately we’re not going to be able to bridge the entire gap or the loss that they’ve suffered this year. The dairy industry across the country has really been hit hard. This is, if you will, just a quick assistance, or some sort of bridge assistance to help ease some of that pain and help get them into the next year, when our economists and others believe we’ll see a strengthening in the dairy prices.
(Host) At their worst point over the past year, prices paid to farmers for their milk fell to $11 for every hundred pounds produced.
Prices have now recovered to about $15. But that’s still well below the $18 dollars it costs to produce 100 pounds.