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Dairy Facts 2016

Members Take to the Hill to Talk GMOs, Child Nutrition and Trade

Jun 16, 2016
Frank Otis, president and CEO of Crystal Creamery (right) met with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to discuss dairy issues.

IDFA’s Advocacy Days, the annual grassroots fly-in, kicked off Tuesday afternoon with an issues briefing and continued yesterday with nearly 40 member representatives and IDFA staff members traveling to Capitol Hill for congressional visits.

In two days, they visited the offices of nearly 75 members of Congress to discuss issues of interest to dairy. Large delegations of dairy manufacturers met with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), Senate Agriculture Chairman Pat Roberts (R-KS), House Agriculture Committee Chairman Mike Conaway (R-TX) and Ranking Member Collin Peterson (MN), while others visited the offices of House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) and Senate Agriculture Committee Ranking Member Debbie Stabenow (D-MI).

The topics they covered included federal preemption for labeling products made with genetically modified ingredients (GMOs), Child Nutrition Reauthorization and industry support for the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.

Representative Reid Ribble (R-WI) opened the Washington Insiders Breakfast yesterday by accepting an award from IDFA in appreciation for his “steadfast support of the U.S. dairy industry.” Ribble will leave Congress this year at the end of his third team. Read more about his accomplishments for the dairy industry here.

David Wasserman, U.S. House editor for the Cook Political, closed the breakfast with a fast, funny and provocative look at the U.S. presidential campaigns and the coming election. Noting that “this is the election of the elite versus the non-elite,” Wasserman offered an intriguing look at what Whole Foods and Cracker Barrel can tell us about America’s voting habits.

The day ended with a spectacular turnout for the 34th Annual Capitol Hill Ice Cream Party.

To see photos of IDFA members and staff in action on Capitol Hill and the ice cream party, visit IDFA’s Facebook page.

For more information, contact Ashley Burch, IDFA director of political programs, at

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