President Trump signed the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, better known as the farm bill, on Dec. 20. Randy Mooney, chairman of the Arlington, Va.-based National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) was in attendance; NMPF said Trump praised the hard work of American farmers and noted Congress’s efforts to assist them.

NMPF thanked President Trump for “signing a farm bill that enacts necessary reforms for dairy farmers.” The organization said it looks forward to working with USDA to quickly implement several new programs.

Dairy has been noted as a big winner in the bill, with new programs that assist dairy producers facing low prices, NMPF said.

“By signing the farm bill, the president has acknowledged the problems dairy producers face and has put his stamp on improving their circumstances,” said Mooney, who operates Mooney Dairy in Rogersville, Mo., with his wife Jan. “That only increases momentum for USDA to put these programs in effect quickly, assisting producers in a time of need.”

USDA earlier this week highlighted implementation of the dairy programs as an early priority, NMPF said. Once USDA draws up rules to administer its initiatives, producers will sign up for their coverage retroactive to Jan. 1.

Kansas City, Kan.-based Dairy Farmers of America (DFA) also reacted the president’s signing of the bill.

“We appreciate the president’s support of this bill, and urge the USDA to prioritize implementation of the new Dairy Margin Coverage program so that dairy farmers can access improved margin protection tools during these challenging times,” said John Wilson, senior vice president and chief fluid marketing officer, DFA.