A major U.S. farm cooperative has filed legal complaints against two Idaho dairies, alleging they haven't paid back debts for feed.

In separate legal actions, the Minnesota-based Land O'Lakes cooperative claims that DeHoog Dairies of Parma, Idaho, owes about $180,000 and that Vander Schaaf Farms of Kuna, Idaho, owes nearly $140,000 for feed that had been extended on credit.

The company seeks full repayment of the credit lines, plus 18 percent in annual interest and compensation for legal costs.

Neither the dairy farms or the farm cooperative's attorneys could be reached for comment.

Farm suppliers may decide to come after their clients in court if they fear the farms may go out of business, said Ryan Miltner, an Ohio attorney who specializes in representing dairies.

Miltner spoke in general terms and was not commenting directly on the cases mentioned in this article.

Filing a lawsuit offers a way for an unsecured creditor -- such as a farm supplier who doesn't receive collateral for debt -- to minimize losses, he said.

-- Mateusz Perkowski

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