Dairy group criticizes elimination of USDA report

Published On: Mar 13 2013 04:25:32 PM CDT   Updated On: Mar 13 2013 04:26:03 PM CDT
MADISON, Wis. (AP) -

A leading dairy group is criticizing the U.S. Department of Agriculture's decision to eliminate its milk production reports.

The USDA's statistical arm announced Tuesday that it would suspend multiple reports covering at least 10 agricultural products ranging from milk and chickpeas to cattle and catfish because of $85 billion in across-the-board federal spending cuts went into effect earlier this month.

Perhaps the highest profile reports on the chopping block are the agency's milk production estimates.

Chris Galen of the National Milk Producers Federation said Wednesday this is a big deal because the reports are used to make decisions about marketing milk and other dairy products and to set prices.

Galen says he's not aware of any other entities that produce the data dairy farmers need.