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Dairy Facts 2016

IDFA Applauds Congressional Efforts on New Guest-worker Program for Agriculture

Jan 16, 2018
Representative Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.)


Contact: Peggy Armstrong
(202) 220-3508

(Washington, D.C. – January 16, 2018) The International Dairy Foods Association issued the following statement by Michael Dykes, D.V.M., IDFA president and CEO, regarding “The Securing America's Future Act,” which was introduced last week by Representatives Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.), Michael McCaul (R-Texas), Raúl Labrador (R-Idaho) and Martha McSally (R-Ariz.). The act aims to reform legal immigration programs in part by creating a new agricultural guest-worker program for America’s farmers and ranchers.

“On behalf of America’s dairy processing industry, the International Dairy Foods Association commends Rep. Bob Goodlatte for taking a step forward to addressing the workforce needs of dairy farmers and processors in ‘The Securing America's Future Act.’

“The U.S. dairy sector is increasingly looking to global markets for growth opportunities. We are well positioned to meet the nutritional needs of a growing world because we have the industry and regulatory standards to assure consumers that our products are safe, the technology to innovate, the infrastructure to deliver to our customers and the natural resources to expand milk production.

“To take full advantage, our industry needs a robust and reliable workforce, and a strong guest-worker program will play a critical role in making this happen.

“We appreciate the leadership of Rep. Goodlatte on the guest-worker program for agriculture and his willingness to consider the unique needs of our industry. The dairy industry requires labor solutions, and his proposal would move U.S. immigration law in the right direction.”

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The International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA), Washington, D.C., represents the nation’s dairy manufacturing and marketing industry, which employs nearly 1 million skilled individuals, generates more than $39 billion in direct wages and has an overall economic impact of more than $200 billion. IDFA is the umbrella organization for the Milk Industry Foundation (MIF), the National Cheese Institute (NCI) and the International Ice Cream Association (IICA). 

Our members range from large multinational organizations to single-plant companies. Together they represent more than 85 percent of the milk, cultured products, cheese, ice cream and frozen desserts produced and marketed in the United States and sold throughout the world. Our diverse membership includes numerous food retailers, suppliers and companies that offer infant formula and a wide variety of milk ingredients.

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