Dairy farmers forced to dump gallons of milk

Updated: Apr. 6, 2020 at 10:32 PM EDT
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CLIMAX, Ga. (WALB) - A dairy farm in Decatur County is having to dump thousands of gallons of milk as a result of COVID-19.

A load of milk was dumped out at Providence Dairy farms. The owner said they didn’t want to do this, but they had no other choice.

An entire 24,000 gallons of milk, was gone in just two days from Providence Dairy Farms.

Dairy Forced to Dump Gallons of Milk, Climax
Dairy Forced to Dump Gallons of Milk, Climax(Source: WALB)

“This is an unprecedented event. I think over the next week or so, things are going to level out,” said Matt Johnson, owner of Providence Dairy Farm in Climax.

Johnson said there’s nowhere for the milk to go since most restaurants are closed and some grocery stores are limiting how much you can buy. He said there’s just no need for more product and milk processors are full.

“There’s nowhere to process it right now. Processors have limited storage because milk is a perishable item. It moves pretty quick,” said Johnson.

They would like to donate the milk, but regulations stipulate how it has to be handled to be given away.

“A lot of food banks don’t have cold storage. They just don’t have the capacity to store four and 5,000 gallons of milk at one time,” said Johnson.

He said they’re limited on where they can donate and how much they can donate.

“All the dairy farms in the southeast are collectively sharing the loss of all the milk going down the drain,” said Johnson.

He said in the entire southeast, about one 1.5 million gallons of milk were dumped.

“It’s not that the products aren’t needed, it’s not that the products aren’t wanted. It’s getting the products from the farm to the consumer,” explained Johnson.

Johnson said right now, they’re just trying to figure out how to move more milk to people who need it.

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