The European Union's plan to buy up skim milk powder and butter from European producers is spurring U.S. producers to join in protest with farmers from Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Guatemala, Mexico, Paraguay and Uruguay.

The broad coalition says it is fearful the EU’s plan to purchase the dairy commodities at below-market prices and sell them into the international market will depress global prices and hurt non-European producers.

“The European Commission must avoid dumping government-purchased SMP and butter on the world market and implementing policies that undermine global dairy markets under the guise of protecting its farmers,” the coalition said in a statement released Tuesday. “The EU’s market-distorting practices are harmful enough during normal operations. If used in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has dramatically eroded dairy prices, they would be disastrous to the world dairy market by prolonging the current crushing economic conditions.”

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