News Wire

The Wisconsin Dairy Products Association (WDPA) has announced that Dairy Field and Cheese Market News have finalized an agreement with WDPA to become the exclusive sponsors of the Grand Champion Awards for the World Dairy Expo Championship Dairy Product Contest. Dairy Field will be the annual sponsor of the Grand Champion Award for Grade A Products and Ice Cream, while Cheese Market News will be the annual sponsor of the Grand Champion Award for Cheese and Butter. “We’re extremely happy to have two of the leading dairy industry publications joining our contest,” says Brad Legreid, WDPA executive director. “Dairy Field and Cheese Market News are well-known and highly respected media sources within our industry and their participation will help our contest continue its phenomenal growth and success.” The awards will be presented October 2 in Madison, Wis.
Kansas City, Mo.-based Dairy Farmers of America Inc. (DFA) has announced changes to its American Cheese division, including the closure of the cooperative’s Corona, Calif., facility and the transfer of DFA’s American cheese (large-bag shredded and packaged) business in Corona and Zumbrota, Minn., to Wisconsin-based Schreiber Foods Inc. According to Tom Camerlo, chairman of DFA’s board of directors, the decision to cease operations in Corona and to enter into an alliance with Schreiber Foods reflects DFA’s ongoing commitment to reduce or eliminate economic vulnerabilities within its business structure.
California-based Challenge Dairy has announced plans to produce and sell butter products made from milk from cows not treated with synthetic growth hormones. The decision, based on consumer feedback, will affect the company’s most popular products: Challenge Salted, Challenge Unsalted, Challenge Whipped and Danish Creamery brands.
Standard & Poor’s (S&P) placed Dallas-based Dean Foods Co.’s corporate credit rating on a negative watch last month because of record-high raw milk prices and the oversupply of organic milk, the Associated Press reported. A negative ratings outlook means S&P could lower Dean’s credit rating, and a lower credit rating essentially makes it more expensive for the company to borrow money. Milk prices and abundant availability of organic milk is affecting Dean’s operating performance, S&P credit analyst Jayne Ross told the AP. The current market, coupled with Dean Foods being up to a year behind in improving credit protection measures, led to the negative outlook, according to the AP.
Horizon Organic, Boulder, Colo., has significantly grown its farmer-partner network this year, which now exceeds 400 family farms, a milestone for the company, Horizon says. Through the second quarter of 2007, Horizon Organic welcomed 79 newly certified dairy farms into its rapidly growing family of farmer partners, which is three times the amount over the same period last year.
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