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Sen. Schumer introduces Greek yogurt bill geared toward dairy farmers


U.S. Sen. Charles E. Schumer introduced legislation Thursday aimed at helping dairy farmers produce more milk to meet the demand for Greek yogurt that will call for a 15 percent increase in milk production statewide.

Called the Dairy Augmentation for Increased Retail in Yogurt products act, or DAIRY, the bill would establish federal savings accounts to help farmers save and grow when the economy is strong but also weather market downturns. Those accounts would reward savings during periods when business is strong, deferring taxes on those savings until farmers must withdraw funds to cover new expenses or manage cash flow. A second bill would enable farmers who purchase cows that are in production to write off those cows as a capital expense, decreasing their overall tax burden.

Sen. Schumer’s office reported there are 107,700 dairy cows in the north country, which will have to increase production by 336,225,000 pounds per year.

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