Its name says it all: United Dairymen of Arizona (UDA) is a group of Arizona-based dairy farmers united together to stabilize and strengthen the market for milk products. Supplied by some 90-member producers, the cooperative's plant has the capacity to process 10 million pounds of milk per day, about 90% of the milk in the state. Products include sweet cream and butter, fluid and condensed skim milk, and non-fat dry milk, among several. Customers include onsite cheese maker Schreiber Foods, fluid milk processors, and supermarket chains throughout The Grand Canyon State. UDA also makes dried lactose powder for food manufacturers. Started in 1960, the co-op was formed through a merger of two dairy associations.
UDA's Arizona-based manufacturing plant operates 24/7, often serving as a balancing plant for other area processors. Its capacity handles a broad line of milk products, shifting milk production according to dairy supply and market demand. The plant is the largest supervised kosher milk facility in the US. UDA also produces blended dry products as part of joint venture. UDA's operations include providing emergency repair, preventative maintenance, installation, and transportation services, and related supplies to members. Since 2007, the co-op's service and supply division share a facility in Texas, too.
Although UDA's business is concentrated in Arizona, its member interests cross both eastern California and Texas. Beyond the US, UDA has benefited from export assistance to sell cheese to customers in Asia, North Africa, and the Middle East. As a member of DairyAmerica (which is controlled by California Dairies), UDA further extends its international reach by selling non-fat dry milk, skim milk powder, and other products on the auction block known as GlobalDairyTrade, developed by Fonterra.
The only milk marketing co-op in Arizona, UDA is focused on improving production, processing, and marketing opportunities for member-producers. To that end, it strategically joins with other daily cooperatives to expand global trade of dairy products and promote legislation that addresses issues such s surplus of milk, low prices, and volatile markets. – less