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Headline News

  • May 02, 2019

    Dairy Delivers® for America’s Printers

    IDFA continues to demonstrate that the dairy industry has a powerful economic impact – $628 billion in total – on the American economy. Did you know that dairy also indirectly supports unique industries across the nation, like printing? More than 6,470 jobs in the printing industry depend on spending by the dairy industry or dairy industry employees, including more than 3,860 jobs for making containers and labels used in a wide range of dairy products. All told, the dairy industry creates $344.1 million in wages and almost $1.1 billion in economic impact for American printers.
  • May 01, 2019

    FDA Announces Plans to Develop New Blueprint for ‘Smarter Food Safety’

    FDA officials on Tuesday announced plans to augment the requirements of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) with new initiatives that will use emerging technologies to speed the tracking and tracing of food through the supply chain. As a start, FDA intends to develop a “Blueprint for a New Era of Smarter Food Safety” that will cover traceability, digital technologies and evolving food business models, such as e-commerce, while addressing potential risks in the food supply. Although no timetable was given, the officials said FDA will hold a public meeting later this year to seek stakeholder input, learn what others are doing to enhance food safety and share the agency’s strategic ideas and initiatives.
  • April 30, 2019

    IDFA Applauds USTR’s Strong Statements on Common Food Names

    In a move with implications for U.S. cheese producers, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) recently released its annual Special 301 Report on the state of intellectual property (IP) rights around the world. The report highlighted the “negative market access effects of the approach of the European Union (EU) to the protection of geographical indications (GIs) in the EU and third-country markets on U.S. producers and traders, particularly those with prior trademark rights or who rely on the use of common names.”
  • April 30, 2019

    Urgent: Trade pacts needed now, Dykes Says

    The U.S. International Trade Commission recently reported that the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) would increase U.S. dairy exports by more than $277 million. “With this good news in hand, we’ve stepped up our advocacy efforts, calling for swift passage of the USMCA by Congress,” said Michael Dykes, D.V.M., president and CEO of IDFA, in his April column for Cheese Market News.
  • Andrei Mikhalevsky, CEO of California Dairies Inc. (far left), testifies on importance of trade to  U.S. dairy industry.
    April 30, 2019

    Trade Is Key to Dairy’s Future, California Dairies CEO Tells Congress

    The House Subcommittee on Livestock and Foreign Agriculture held a hearing Tuesday to review the state of the dairy economy. Andrei Mikhalevsky, CEO of California Dairies Inc. and an officer of IDFA’s executive council, testified on the importance of free and equitable trade to the health of the U.S. dairy industry and the American economy. He was one of five witnesses invited to present. “Andrei spoke for our IDFA members when he laid out a clear case to Congress on the importance of securing free, fair trade deals like USMCA to level the playing field for American dairy producers and processors,” said Michael Dykes, D.V.M., president and CEO of IDFA.
  • Michael Dykes, D.V.M. (center), president and CEO of IDFA, discusses the economy and trade with Senator John Thune (R-SD) (left) and Doug Wilke, CEO of Valley Queen Cheese Factory, Inc.
    April 25, 2019

    IDFA Fly-Out to South Dakota Focused on Expanding Trade and Sustaining Dairy’s Economic Growth

    IDFA president and CEO Michael Dykes, D.V.M., joined Senator John Thune, South Dakota Secretary of Agriculture Kim Vanneman, and Senator Mike Rounds’ chief of staff Mark Johnston, at the newly expanded Valley Queen Cheese Company in Milbank, S.D. this week for IDFA’s second Strategic Fly-Out. The event was a great success, convening dairy industry and government leaders in a roundtable discussion focused on legislative and regulatory issues impacting U.S. dairy, including pending trade agreements and negotiations, labor and immigration, and geographical indications (GIs). Senator Thune of South Dakota spent nearly two hours with the group, touring the Valley Queen Cheese facility and talking policy and legislation with the group, which included leadership from IDFA as well as from IDFA members Valley Queen, Agropur, Land O’Lakes, Saputo Cheese, and Bel Brands.
  • April 25, 2019

    IDFA urges careful analysis of FDA’s new findings on ice cream

    The Food and Drug Administration released a report on its findings from inspections and environmental sampling for Listeria monocytogenes and Salmonella at 89 ice cream production facilities in 32 states from Sept. 12, 2016, to Aug. 30, 2017. The sampling was designed to gain insights into the extent to which Listeria monocytogenes and Salmonella may be in the manufacturing environment, and to evaluate each establishment’s ability to identify, prevent, reduce and/or eliminate microbial hazards. IDFA prepared a statement in response to the FDA’s findings, noting that they must be read and reported carefully so as not to exaggerate the sampling results.
  • April 25, 2019

    NCIMS to Debate Inspections for Preventive Controls and Yogurt Parfaits

    IDFA will help coordinate and advocate on behalf of the industry at the National Conference on Interstate Milk Shipments (NCIMS) biennial meeting, April 26- May 1, in St. Louis, Missouri, where delegates will consider 74 proposals to change Grade “A” plant and farm regulations in the Pasteurized Milk Ordinance (PMO). One proposal seeks to provide state regulators with greater responsibility for inspecting Grade “A” plants and products for compliance with the requirements of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) preventive controls rule. Another will consider whether popular and widely-produced yogurt parfait products should be required to be regulated under the PMO. READ MORE
  • April 24, 2019

    IDFA and Others Call for Improved Access to Japan

    In a letter spearheaded by IDFA, 89 food and agriculture associations and companies urged U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer to negotiate a free trade agreement with Japan that allows improved market access and expands opportunities for U.S. exports. Lighthizer and Japanese Economy Minister Toshimitsu Motegi met last week to begin discussing the framework for a possible agreement between the two countries, and IDFA aims to ensure that U.S. dairy and other agricultural industries remain an integral part of the discussions.
  • April 24, 2019

    FDA Allows New Sweetener to Be Excluded from Sugar Declarations

    The Food and Drug Administration issued draft guidance last week to explain its current position on allulose, a low-calorie sweetener, and allow enforcement discretion for certain declarations in the Nutrition and Supplement Facts label. FDA will allow manufacturers to exclude the sweetener from the total and added sugars declarations, but they must continue to include it in the total carbohydrates declaration. “We believe this enforcement discretion will help consumers to learn the true nutritional profile of products containing allulose, including dairy products,” Cary Frye, IDFA senior vice president of regulatory affairs.
  • April 16, 2019

    Japan Announces 2019 Dairy TRQs

    Japan’s Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries oversees the tariff rate quotas (TRQs) that determine the volume of dairy products that can enter the country each year based on a specific tariff code. For the Japanese fiscal year April 1, 2019-March 31, 2020, the ministry recently announced TRQs that include natural cheese for processing, skimmed milk powder, evaporated milk, butter and butteroil, and certain whey products.
  • April 16, 2019

    Federal Agencies Announce Collaborative Strategy for Reducing Food Waste

    The U.S. Department of Agriculture, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Food and Drug Administration last week announced six priority action areas designed to reduce food loss and waste. The interagency collaboration, dubbed “Winning on Reducing Food Waste,” stems from a formal agreement announced by the three federal agencies last October. “Most recently, IDFA successfully advocated for $1.5 million for USDA’s Agricultural Research Service to research solutions for ice cream co-product, and we look forward to new opportunities to participate in this collaborative effort,” said Danielle Quist, IDFA’s senior director of regulatory affairs and counsel.
  • Douglas Stearn, Deputy Director, Regulatory Affairs, CFSAN, FDA,
    April 16, 2019

    Regulatory RoundUP Offers Chance to Interact with Federal Regulators

    Do you have questions about new food safety rules and compliance? Expanding commodity purchases for federal programs? Export opportunities and obstacles? Changes to the Federal Milk Marketing Order system? These are just a few of the topics targeted for discussion at IDFA's Regulatory RoundUP, June 4-5, 2019, in metro Washington, D.C. This year’s speakers include several federal decision-makers with responsibility for the rules that affect dairy plants, products and personnel.
  • April 16, 2019

    US-Japan Trade Talks Begin; Dairy Keen on Three Key Priorities ​

    U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Japanese Economy Minister Toshimitsu Motegi met this week in Washington, D.C., to begin discussing the framework for a possible trade agreement between the two countries. The USTR’s negotiating objectives, which were outlined by the administration in December, include several of IDFA’s priorities. The top three call for increasing access to the Japanese market, reducing or eliminating tariffs on U.S. agricultural products and addressing technical barriers to trade.
  • April 15, 2019

    Dairy Delivers® for America’s Repair Technicians

    IDFA continues to demonstrate that the dairy industry has a powerful economic impact – $628 billion in total – on the American economy. Did you know that dairy also indirectly supports companies that repair and maintain household and personal goods? Nearly 6,970 jobs at firms that repair and maintain personal and household goods depend on spending by the dairy industry or dairy industry employees. All told, the dairy industry creates $345.8 million in wages and nearly $588.7 million in economic impact for firms employing American repair technicians.
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