Monday, June 15, 2009


The store brand butter in my local supermarket travels, if it travels directly, 2,860 miles from the Tulare, California Land O Lakes plant. Each stick of butter contains plant information. The butter used to come from Wisconsin but LOL shut that plant down.

One might think, sending butter the extra distance would be a costs for LOL. Not to worry. California assesses their dairy farmers a couple cents a pound for every pound of butter produced in the state. This money is then used to send butter out of state – a subsidy on the backs of dairy farmers.

California dairy farmers also import from out of state, I believe, 75% of the forages their cows eat. And they import virtually all the grain.

The point I am trying to make is a lot of fossil fuel, now over $70 a barrel, went into getting a pound of butter from California to New York State.

Another point is the plain and simple fact, the East is deficit on milk or the butter could be made here.

If a sane person, most any sane person would do, were to sit down to come up with dairy policy, that policy would not like a thing like our present policy.


  1. John, Where do you get information that shows 75% of forages being imported to CA?

  2. Tom, thanks for the correction. I should have said imports of hay a likely to be up 75%. As you probably know, California is the lead state for Alfalfa but,production will probably fall on water issues and other higher value crops.