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Profit goes down the drain as dairy farmers forced to dump milk

Last Updated Apr 8, 2020 at 3:11 pm MDT

Farmer worker hand milking cow in cow milk farm. (CREDIT: iStock Photo)

CALGARY (660 NEWS) – Many dairy farmers are forced to dump raw milk down the drain as the supply chain suffers several blows from COVID-19.

Alberta Milk told 660 NEWS demand has fluctuated as the service industry shut down and people started hoarding resources.

Many of the milk processors in Canada have been at capacity for weeks.

“We are having to discard raw milk. It’s not safe for consumers to enjoy.”

Karlee Conway with Alberta Milk said that many farmers are forced to make a difficult decision.

“It’s something we don’t like doing, no dairy farmer likes doing it, no one does. There are just some real limitations in our supply chain right now.”

The Dairy Farmers of Ontario reportedly told hundreds of farmers to dump raw milk. Those farmers produce around three billion litres of milk per year.

Conway added that every person in the supply chain is working hard to solve the issues and hopes for quick resolutions, explaining it doesn’t just affect Albertan or Canadian dairy farmers but the entire world.

“Everybody along the chain has some accountability as to why this is happening, and everybody in the supply chain is working incredibly hard to make sure this stops,” She said. “It’s just such unprecedented times.”

In a statement released Tuesday, Dairy Farmers of Canada said they are working to cope with difficulties brought on by the closure of many restaurants and the changing patterns in grocery store buying.

The organization said despite the limitations, many farmers and processors have donated dairy products to local food banks.

Conway said, there’s a small upside, which is some of that raw milk has been sent to biodigesters that produce an organic fuel to create electricity for some communities.