Dairy Industry Gets Increased Hauling Capacity

Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association members are applauding Gov. Tony Evers for raising dairy hauling capacity on the state’s roads.

SB 431 extends the state’s current allowance for milk hauling of 98,000 pounds over six axles to include all liquid dairy products. 

“SB 431 facilitates dairy processors’ efforts to transport their liquid whey in an environmentally friendly, financially viable, and safe manner,” says Rebekah Sweeney, senior director of programs and policy.

Whey powder and whey protein concentrate are value-added ingredients in a wide range of food products. This includes processed meat, sausages, health foods, baby food and formula, beverages, and confections. Dried whey represents a significant commercial opportunity for Wisconsin dairy processors. It comprises 31 percent of all the state’s dairy sales abroad. 

However, due to the cost of drying, whey is typically hauled from cheesemaking plants in liquid form for additional processing. Existing state regulations allow dairy haulers to transport milk at heavier weight limits but previously did not account for other liquid dairy products. 

“We’re thrilled to see the positive impacts this bill will have on our sustainability efforts,” says Scott Potts, BelGioioso Cheese.

Potts says thanks to SB 431, BelGioioso will reduce fuel used in transporting loads by nearly 29,000 gallons per year.

“We’d also reduce our carbon dioxide emissions by 258 metric tons per year,” he says.

Dave Buholzer of Klondike Cheese Company adds they too will be able to maximize resources thanks to the legislation.

“We’ll be able to use fewer tankers, which means reducing our water usage,” Buholzer says. “Less congestion means less administrative work – and more staff time for other tasks that help grow our business.”