Milk prices could double without new farm bill

Some say six dollars for a gallon of milk could be a new reality if Congress doesn’t pass a new farm bill.

The current farm bill expires on September 30, 2013.  If Congress does not pass a new farm bill by then, farm policy reverts to rates from the 1940’s, which means milk prices could increase.

The Senate passed their version of a farm bill in June.  The House passed a farm bill in July, removing the food stamp program from its version of the legislation.

“Well I think there’s a chance that milk might go up to $6 a gallon if something isn’t done,” said Congressman Dave Loebsack.

“Six dollars a gallon? That’s kind of ridiculous,” said Lisa Kinney.

“No, that wouldn’t be good, it wouldn’t be good,” added Henry Preston, a dairy farmer.

Preston wakes up at 3 a.m. every day to take care of the more than 100 cows he owns.

“Dairy is everything. Everything I do goes to the cows,” said Henry Preston.

He’s been doing it for 35 years.

“We need some stability,” he said.

That stability could come in the form of a farm bill.

“You can plan on what you’re having in the future,” said Preston.

“If milk prices go up that much, it’s going to be horrible. It’s going to be as bad as gasoline, going up to $6 a gallon.  Maybe even worse,” said Congressman Loebsack.

“I’m going to probably have to milk my own cow,” said Kinney.

“We don’t want people to have to pay $6 a gallon, we just want a fair price,” added Preston.

Preston is skeptical about milk prices going up and of a long-term bill being passed.

“Well I don’t think that’s going to happen, people wouldn’t be able to buy it.  We don’t want that,” said Preston, “You gotta be able to plan how to pay that and they don’t get that,” he added.

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