INTENTIONAL OR AN OVERSIGHT....
Yesterday, at the local SAFEWAY market in Glendale Arizona, I paid $1.57 for a gallon of 2% milk. It was on sale for the regular price is $3.79, month in, month out...Let us experience now prices of the milk without the protection provided by long term legislation..Chief
October 7, 2012
A Gloomy Season for Dairy Farmers
Last week began without a farm bill, a legislative lapse of shameful proportions. Since 1949, the bill has always been renewed, but not this year. Even so, most of the 2012 crop is still covered by loans, insurance programs and commodity supports until the end of the year — with one important exception.
That exception is dairy farmers. When the farm bill expired, so did the Milk Income Loss Contract Program, which pays dairy farmers when milk prices, which are always volatile, fall below a set level. The payment is also adjusted to the price of feed, which has been high, thanks to record corn prices, and will be much higher after this year’s nationwide drought.
The program was designed to help small dairy operations, the kind that are prevalent in the Northeast. Typically, in New York, the program can provide a farmer with as much as 10 percent of his income. For all too many farmers — caught between diminishing demand for milk, historically low milk prices and historically high grain prices — that is the difference between bare survival and certain insolvency.
We are not fans of price supports, including dairy subsidies, but there is a special argument to be made in the case of small-scale dairy farming in the Northeast. Nearly 2.5 million acres in New York are directly tied to dairy farming. Working farms keep the land open and productive and hold development at bay.
When Congress returns, it needs to make sure that program payments are restored, even before it goes back to work on the farm bill. The Senate has passed its version of the bill, but the House has not. Some House members seem to think they have all the time in the world. Dairy farmers know better. Without the milk program, help, for many of them, will come too late.
Re: INTENTIONAL OR AN OVERSIGHT....
Historically low milk prices? With the price I'm paying - the most I've ever paid for milk - I would call them "Historically HIGH milk prices". If the dairy farmer isn't getting any money for his milk, who the hell's getting all the money?
Re: INTENTIONAL OR AN OVERSIGHT....
Greetings ALPO...I've been told by merchants that dairy products are not a big money maker for them, but have to carry those in their stores..animals such as horses are currently being abandoned or sold to Mexican markets for pet food because the owners can't afford the cost of basic-basic hay...Grains, such as oats and corn, no longer are used to feed livestock...Chief
Surging prices for hay are hitting Arizona horse lovers and other livestock owners hard, and the situation could get worse before it gets better.
Good-quality alfalfa hay that cost about $12 per bale in January is now running about $18 at local feed stores.
In some cases, prices have nearly doubled in the past year, in a run-up blamed on short supplies and keen demand for hay in drought-stricken areas like Texas, as well as overseas demand in China and Japan.
While the cattle and dairy industries are coping with the high prices and the prospect of winter shortages, the situation is perhaps being most keenly felt in Arizona's so-called "pleasure horse" industry.
The high hay costs are prompting many horse owners to give up their animals - a situation that equine advocates say will only worsen the problem of abandoned horses.
"People are turning them out in the desert - they're giving them away," said T. C. Chicago, who with her husband, Ace, co-owns Marana Feed & Supply
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