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The dairy industry in Maine is an important contributor to the agricultural sector and general economy. In 1982 there were 750 employees processing dairy products in Maine drawing a 12 million dollar payroll (Maine Bureau of Labor). The 1983 farm-gate value of milk produced in Maine totaled 108 million dollars, higher than any other single commodity's farm-gate value (Maine Department of Agriculture, Food and Rural Resources). For the past several years the farm level price of milk has remained fairly steady while production costs inflated. This "price-cost" squeeze worsened in 1983 with a 50 cent per hundredweight decrease in the price received by farmers which was authorized by the Dairy and Tobacco Adjustment Act of 1983.
Limited public information is available concerning the financial health of Maine's dairy farming sector. This aspect is of crucial concern to policy makers in the state. Toward this end the Maine Dairy Industry Association requested that the University of Maine at Orono, in cooperation with the Maine Department of Agriculture, Food and Rural Resources, conduct a study to provide an accurate overall picture of the financial structure and business management practices of Maine's dairy farms.
Maine Agricultural and Forest Experiment Station
dairy farmer debt, dairy farmer debts, milk production
Agriculture | Business
Thurston, Wayne L.; Criner, George K.; and Reeb, Ralph A.. 1985. B812: Dairy Farmer Indebtedness in Maine. Maine Agricultural and Forest Experiment Station Bulletins 812.