California milk jug bottle cap.
December 11, 2017

California Achieves “Quorum” on Quota Vote

 |  By: Jim Dickrell

As of last Friday, 547 producer ballots were received in California’s dairy quota referendum, meaning about 52% of farmer have voted. But there are still some 500 farmers who have yet to vote.

At least 51% of farmers must vote in the referendum for it to be valid. 

The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) has extended the voting deadline to Dec. 22. Originally, the voting was to have ended Dec. 4. But CDFA extended the deadline 18 days, citing concerns over California wildfires in the north part of the state last month.

Once the 51% threshold has been met, the “yes” votes must meet a second threshold for the referendum to actually pass. At least 65% of producers voting representing 51% of the milk voting or 51% of producers voting representing 65% of the milk voting must vote yes.

The new plan must be approved for the quota program to continue if California dairy farmers also vote to implement a Federal Milk Marketing Order for the state. The United States Department of Agriculture has yet to issue a final rule on the new California Federal Order, and no date for a referendum has been set.