Skip to comments.The Steep Cost of US Dairy Programs
Posted on 08/17/2012 8:50:57 AM PDT by 92nina
As the all but certain September fight over the 2012 Farm Bill looms, Americans would do well to remember that despite the happy, Got Milk images we associate with dairy products, in every purchase of milk, cheese, yogurt, and other such products is an extra cost incurred by the governments irresponsible dairy programs. These outdated programs inflate prices and put taxpayers on the hook for expensive subsidies while largely benefitting large-scale, high income farm operations.
US dairy policy is made up of a complicated set of programs which work both to create steady demand and to raise prices for dairy producers.
Despite these figures, the 2012 Farm Bill shows no sign of stopping expensive government intervention in the dairy industry. Representative Bob Goodlattes amendment, which would have ended the supply management aspect of the program, never escaped committee. The Senate version of the Farm Bill proposes to repeal price control and subsidy programs, only to replace them with another expensive bureaucracy. The proposed Dairy Market Stabilization Program would limit milk supply in order to increase demand for dairy products when market prices fall. It would also punish farmers at certain times for increasing production by funneling portions of their milk proceeds to the USDA to purchase dairy products in order to keep prices high. New regulations associated with the DMSP would also add anywhere from hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars in additional costs of dairy producers
Spending millions in taxpayer dollars and higher consumer costs to benefit a relatively few farmers is neither fair nor sensible. While the dairy industry is certainly important, the governments current anti-free market, cartel control is simply a poor solution. While a better solution does not seem likely in the 2012 Farm Bill, Congress would do well to look for free-market friendly techniques that benefit both industry and everyman.
Read more: http://atr.org/steep-cost-dairy-programs-a7138#ixzz23opRsKyC
I’m not happy with the government’s dairy policy either but consider this.If prices went down and dairy farmers were driven out of business and their cows slaughtered and ground into hamburber-it takes years to rebuild those herds.From newborn calf to milk cow takes three years minimum.
After switching to Silk, I can’t stand milk. It smells bad. It goes bad much quicker. I can’t go back.
What are you talking about three years minimum? The standard is around two years and three years would be very rare.
Point is well taken. One approach to avoid such a loss of herds is that the subsidies should decline over a period of years, easing the transition, and allowing farmers to adjust their agriculture.
The objection would be that Congress can bring the subsidies back, but they could do that anytime, even if the subsidies were abolished overnight.
Then let them eat cake without milk. :-)
The price of feed is hurting dairy farmers badly. That’s what we see around here. I don’t think milk has been as low as the support price for a long time, and as for the Milk Income Loss program, it just slows the momentum as you circle the drain.
I think we need US dairy farmers and programs that support them. Who knows what the Chinese would bottle up and label as milk!
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