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Settlement Would Pay An Average of $4k To Dairy Farmers

WAMC/Pat Bradley

More than 7,000 Northeast dairy farmers stand to get an average of $4,000 in a proposed settlement with the cooperative Dairy Farmers of America to resolve antitrust allegations.

The Vermont Senate Agriculture Committee received an update from the attorney general's office Wednesday on the status of the $50 million  settlement that the cooperative Dairy Farmers of America has agreed to pay to thousands of Northeast farmers to settle antitrust allegations.

The 2009 class-action lawsuit charged the cooperative, its marketing arm Dairy Marketing Services, and Dallas-based Dean Foods with working together to monopolize the market for raw milk in the Northeast, driving down prices paid to dairy farmers.

Dean Foods agreed to a $30 million settlement in 2011. DFA has not admitted any wrongdoing.

A judge is expected to decide in the coming months whether to approve the DFA settlement, and farmers have until May to submit a claim.

The settlement includes farmers in Vermont, New York, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and New Hampshire, Delaware, Maryland,, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Virginia.

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.