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Sic Semper Tyrannis

Saturday, June 09, 2007

Where's the Investigation for This?

I demand answers!! I demand a strange, unenforceable definition of price-gouging for the FTC to be given!! I demand press conferences in Washington, Madison, in front of grocery stores, in front of farms.

Dammit, I demand to see Steve Kagen pouring milk...

Wait a minute, did I say 'milk?" That's made in Wisconsin.


Suffer those forces of supply and demand consumers, you're helping the farmers.

Driven up by high transportation costs, an increase in feed prices and even a drought in Australia, the price of milk is likely to rise by up to 40 cents a gallon over the next few months, dairy market forecasters say. Cheese prices could go up by 60 cents a pound.

If the increases occur, a gallon of whole milk would cost an average of $3.78 nationwide, based on the U.S. Department of Agriculture's monthly survey of milk prices in 30 metro areas.

Prices in the last survey, in May, ranged from $2.76 a gallon in Dallas to $3.86 in Chicago and $4.09 in New Orleans, where the dairy industry has struggled to bounce back from Hurricane Katrina.

In Wisconsin, whole milk averaged $2.86 a gallon in May, according to a Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation survey. At Pick 'n Save stores in the Milwaukee area, 2% milk was selling for $3.49 a gallon Friday.

Higher gasoline prices have increased the cost of moving milk from farm to market. Also, corn, the primary feed for dairy cattle, is being diverted for the production of the fuel additive ethanol.

"There is no free lunch. That corn has to come away from that dedicated resource," said Michael Hutjens, a University of Illinois Extension dairy specialist.

As early as July, consumers could see price increases for a wide range of foods that use dairy-product ingredients such as cheese, butter and whey.

"I think the shoe could hit the floor anytime now," Hutjens said.

Actually, I'd pay good money to go to the parallel universe where State Senator Dave Hansen (D-Green Bay) would be going ballistic on "Big Dairy."

That'd be quite a hoot.

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