Guidance for Dairy Farmers During COVID-19 Pandemic

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Two University of Tennessee Extension Publications Available Online

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – COVID-19 has had an effect on nearly every area of daily life, and dairy farmers across Tennessee and the nation are not immune to the ramifications of the pandemic. Two new publications from University of Tennessee Extension provide guidance for the situations and decisions dairy farmers are currently facing.

Disposal of Emergency Dump Milk During COVID-19 Crisis (Publication D 98) gives suggestions for dairy farmers who have excess milk due to the reduced capacity of processing plants. “This publication was created to provide farmers with options and fertilizer considerations if a farm is told to emergency dump their milk,” says Liz Eckelkamp, assistant professor of animal science and UT Extension dairy specialist. Eckelkamp co-authored the publication along with Shawn Hawkins, a professor in the Department of Biosystems Engineering and Soil Science.

A second publication, COVID-19 and the Dairy Industry: The Road So Far (Publication D 106), outlines the current situation across the dairy industry and resources available to farmers who need assistance. “There is a lot of uncertainty and misinformation surrounding COVID-19 impacts on the food industry,” says Eckelkamp. “This publication explains why we are seeing things like emergency milk dumping and how the ripples along the supply chain are impacting dairy farmers. The publication also includes an exhaustive list of available resources, all in one place, so dairy farmers can easily access help if they need it,” continues the expert.

Other publications and resources to help families and farmers navigate the COVID-19 crisis are available online at or by contacting your local county Extension office.

Through its land-grant mission of research, teaching and extension, the University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture touches lives and provides Real. Life. Solutions.​.

Media Contact

Liz Eckelkamp

Department of Animal Science