HARRISBURG – State and dairy officials gathered at Harrisburg Dairies to highlight a new state law strengthening dairy competitiveness. Senate Bill 434, now Act 62, offers milk sell-by date and best-by date labeling flexibility to dairy processors. Act 62 eliminates the arbitrary 17-day ‘sell by’ date requirement in favor of setting industry standards to provide realistic guidelines for determining milk’s actual shelf life. Bill sponsor, Beaver County Sen. Elder Vogel, who chairs the Senate Agriculture & Rural Affairs Committee, says the new law eliminated a barrier that made it difficult for processors to bid to provide PA milk to those who want to sell through national food suppliers and wholesalers. Those suppliers typically required a longer “sell by” date interval, which prevented PA farmers from receiving these contracts. PA ranks 7th nationally in total milk production with nearly 520,000 cows producing over 10.6 billion pounds of milk annually. The industry supports 53,300 jobs and contributes $14.1 billion to the PA’s economy.