How the Dairy Mafia Destroyed Dairy Farmers

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STORY AT-A-GLANCE

  • Dean Foods, one of the biggest dairy companies in the U.S., has filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy
  • Dean Foods is in talks with Dairy Farmers of America (DFA), the largest dairy co-op in the U.S., about a possible acquisition
  • The merger would pose a serious conflict of interest for dairy farmers, as DFA is supposed to advocate for farmers but would end up being a processor
  • As such, DFA would have an interest in keeping milk prices low, at the detriment of the more than 13,000 dairy farmers they represent
  • Many are asking what “killed” Dean Foods, blaming its downfall on everything from plant-based milk alternatives and millennials’ apparent distaste for milk to increased availability of other beverages
  • What’s truly responsible for declining milk consumption, however, is the shift of milk from a fresh, wholesome raw food to one that’s ultraprocessed, homogenized and the product of concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs)

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