Milk Could Skyrocket to $6 to $8 a Gallon

Congress is so focused on the fiscal cliff, the farm bill has yet to be renewed.

Come Jan. 1, there is a threat that milk prices could rise to $6 to $8 a gallon if Congress does not pass a new farm bill that amends farm policy dating back to the Truman presidency, reported the New York Times.

If Congress does not renew the Farm Bill by Monday, Dec. 31, the milk price formula reverts back to 1949, reported CBS Boston.

On average, a gallon of milk costs $3.65, according to the dairy industry.

U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said without a farm bill renewal farmers will be in a hurry to sell to the government, creating a shortage in the stores. It is estimated the price of milk could go as high as $8, he told the Capital Press.

If the farm bill is not renewed the government will be forced to buy milk at inflated prices, driving up the cost for everyone.

As customers demanded milk, markets would look to higher-priced overseas milk producers to make up the shortage, and prices could go up on everything from butter to yogurt to cheese.

Eventually, the government would sell off the milk surplus that it had built up, causing milk prices to plummet.

In the short term, consumers would be devastated and dairy producers would have a payday, after which consumers would get a break while dairy producers watched their profits crash and burn.

“I think there are some serious consequences,” U.S Rep. James P. McGovern, D-Worcester, a member of the House Agriculture Committee, said of the possibility of reverting to decades-old policy to the Worcester Telegram & Gazette. “It’s important that we address the agricultural issues that this nation faces.”

Action on the farm bill this year was stalled by disagreements over the food stamp program, from which some conservative members of the House of Representatives wanted deep cuts, reported the Capital Press.

The National Milk Producers Federation and other farm groups had hoped a farm bill would be part of a final "fiscal cliff" budget package passed before Jan. 1.

However, U.S. Rep. Collin Peterson, D-Minn., said in a radio interview Dec. 20 that Congress appears unlikely to pass a farm bill by the end of the year. He suggested American agriculture may have been too successful at keeping prices low, and sharp price hikes may make people understand "what a good deal they got."


Michael L Moomey December 29, 2012 at 08:26 PM
I believe that congress and the senate should go back to washington and keep milk from going out of acess to poor single parents that now will not be able to buy their children milk. What's with everyone are they afraid someone will be up set if they vote to pass some of the presidents proposers. Maybe they should leave their job and let someone else that is willing to work for ALL Americans. 99% nof us don't make more than $250K a year. Mike Moomey
B Mautino December 29, 2012 at 08:47 PM
Aren't the milk farmers the very people talking about getting the government out of our lives.
Sarah David December 29, 2012 at 08:48 PM
Let's just let the free market take care of it. The federal government is horrible - a bunch of loser leeches in mickey mouse suits. Prices will go up, and the the free market will bring it back down to where the market needs to be. Get the government out of it and stay out.
Harry Kuheim December 29, 2012 at 08:53 PM
The average shopper couldn't fathom the Regulations, Subsidies, and Lobbying that goes on in the Dairy Industry and allows them to pick up a gallon of milk at the store.
Aldo69 December 29, 2012 at 08:54 PM
That isn't what happens if the Farm Bill is not passed.
mark mitchell December 29, 2012 at 08:55 PM
Well when milk and gas become a luxuary you can see the writing on the wall, it ain't good folks. We can bail out the banks and the auto industry but can't save social security! Better keep those firearms close and ready because its not in the distant future that thigs will turn for the bad!
Harry Kuheim December 29, 2012 at 08:56 PM
Good idea...but the leeches will still be making 6 figures doing even less and wearing the same suits anyway.
M Jankowski December 29, 2012 at 09:04 PM
Seriously????We have been putting Band Aids on the milk pricing policy for 60+ years???And we wonder why we can't fix anything. Wake up America!!!
Alan Kalitta December 29, 2012 at 09:06 PM
be interesting when milk gets dumped because no one buys it . be more interesting when they sell bad milk and people get sick
Mark Curcio December 29, 2012 at 09:09 PM
$6 to $8 per gallon for milk? I like Milk! Alot! That said, I would have to cut down on my milk consumption, as would many people. With the price of milk at such levels, producers would be encouraged to produce more product....but fewer people could afford it. Milk prices would then fall due to a glut in the market, stabilizing at level near to what we pay now. Interesting. So, basically, we would pay roughly the same we pay now... in a few months... and we'd no longer have to subsidize the milk industry! I'm OK with that!
jack fowler December 29, 2012 at 09:09 PM
That's why they will be calling for the ban on guns. Yeesh...
Luke Thomas December 29, 2012 at 09:26 PM
DROUGHT is causing the price of milk and meat to skyrocket. ANd it's not going to let up 2013.
Luke Thomas December 29, 2012 at 09:27 PM
The food stamp program currently costs you tax payers $80 billion dollars. WIth milk and meat as allowed it will easily rise to $160 billion a year. That's okay the government has unlimited amounts of money - keep those printing presses rolling!
Tim2012 December 29, 2012 at 09:39 PM
"consumers would be devastated and dairy producers would have a payday, after which consumers would get a break while dairy producers watched their profits crash and burn...". And the taxpayers and our children holding the bag for buy high and sell low. What about passing a bill retracting the 1949 law for good, and get the government out of the selling and storing milk business. We could not even guarantee education and healthcare, much less farmers income level.
Andrew Chen December 29, 2012 at 09:39 PM
Milk .. why subsidize large conglomerates who have put out of business local small farmers, and who sell substandard "milk" so dangerous/ dirty it has to be pasteurized to be safe. Let's get rid of these dirty and inhumane milk "factories":
Weldon Gebhard December 29, 2012 at 09:42 PM
Probably over exagerated. But, out of college '60 and three children we drank much powdered milk mixed half with fresh. We had no AC, color TV or Cable a 20%/80% medical plan and one Very sick child. You do what you have to do brother and quit the b------g!
Weldon Gebhard December 29, 2012 at 09:44 PM
Cut down on the beer.
Weldon Gebhard December 29, 2012 at 09:46 PM
HooRay! Most don't know that by far the largest part of the farm budget is Food Stamps.
ed December 29, 2012 at 09:48 PM
Yea know we destroy the planet that keeps us alive by polluting the air consuming all natural resources until gone or exstinct focus on weapons of destruction instead of medicine and food production communicating with beings from other planets instead of each other and the elimination of g-d in our lives I guess it will be over soon and g-d can try to create intelligent life next time
Anna Bucciarelli December 30, 2012 at 04:03 PM
Well, I pay $1.59 for 1/2 gal. of store-brand skim now, which is about half of what's predicted for a full gallon ... this rise is far greater than it should be, my opinion.


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