Maryland & Virginia Milk Producers Cooperative celebrated its 90th year of operation with record earnings of $14.5 million and reaffirmed its mission to maximize returns to members. CEO Jay Bryant announced the year-end results at the Annual Meeting held in Ellicott City, Maryland, on March 26 and continued on March 30 in Asheville, North Carolina.
“From an operations perspective, we could not have asked for a better year,” said Bryant. He attributed the cooperative’s record financial performance to a continued focus on efficiencies and reducing costs at all operations from the cooperative’s Reston, Va.-based headquarters to the fluid and manufacturing divisions.
“We are sensitive to the fact that our members faced a much different set of economics last year,” said Bryant. “Survival was their number one priority and we knew we had to perform; we had to do more with less to maximize profits and provide our members with an increased level of support.”
The management team, under direction from the Board, concentrated on fulfilling the cooperative’s mission to maximize member returns.
Maryland & Virginia’s $14.5 million in earnings for 2009 is based on marketings of nearly three billion pounds of member milk. Overall the cooperative reduced its debt by $4.6 million and increased member equity by more than $10 million.
“I know that 2009 stretched us dairy farmers to the limit, practically to the breaking point,” said President Dwayne Myers of Jonesville, N.C. in his officer’s report.
“Those of us who chose to keep on milking have come through with a new appreciation for what it takes to be resilient. I want to reassure you that Maryland & Virginia, your cooperative, is 100 percent behind you and supporting you, the dairy farmer, however we can.”
Myers focused his remarks on the following five key components of Maryland & Virginia’s core values:
1. We are responsible to the membership.
2. We are financially sound.
3. We have a profitable strategy.
4. We are prepared to handle change.
5. We are national leaders.
“There’s nothing that can take away the sting of 2009,” said Myers in his closing remarks. “However, we are optimistic and focused on the future and on how we can make the U.S. dairy industry viable long-term for our members.
During the executive session of the business meeting, the membership elected the following member-owners to the board of directors:
• Richard Mosemann of Warfordsburg, Pennsylvania
• Ray Thrush of Shippensburg, Pennsylvania
• Garvin Schaffer of Dornsife, Pennsylvania
• Edwin Fry of Chestertown, Maryland
• Monk Sanford of Orange, Virginia
• Dwayne Myers of Elkin, North Carolina
The cooperative also recognized the following retiring directors for their years of service to the membership:
• David Graves of Ashburn, Virginia
• Billy French of Maurertown, Virginia
• Bob Payne of Still Pond, Maryland
• Kevin Satterwhite of Newberry, South Carolina
TOP RIGHT: Maola Milk and Ice Cream Company’s spokescow, MooElla, made an appearance at Maryland & Virginia’s second day of Annual Meeting festivities in Asheville, North Carolina, greeting members young and old, including members Brenna Myers and her mom Sybil from Jonesville, North Carolina.
LEFT: Maryland & Virginia CEO Jay Bryant reported record earnings of $14.5 million for the cooperative’s 90th year at the organization’s Annual Meeting held March 26 at Turf Valley Resort and Conference Center in Ellicott City, Maryland, and continued March 30 at the Asheville Renaissance Hotel in Asheville, North Carolina.
BOTTOM RIGHT: Bob Payne (center) of Still Pond, Maryland, was recognized for his ten years of service on Maryland & Virginia’s board of directors by President Dwayne Myers (far left) and CEO Jay Bryant (far right) at the cooperative’s first day of Annual Meeting business on March 26 at Turf Valley Resort and Conference Center in Ellicott City, Maryland.
Information and photos provided by:
Director of Corporate Communications
Maryland & Virginia Milk Producers Cooperative
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Young cooperators gather to interact and learn at annual conference