Milk prices may double in new year, if fiscal cliff not avoided - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Milk prices may double in new year, if fiscal cliff not avoided

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DURHAM, CT (WFSB) -

If lawmakers don't pass a farm bill by the end of this year, it will send farms all across the country over what's being called the "dairy cliff." And that will have you paying double for the price of milk.

Joe Greenbacker and other farmers like him are on the edge of their seats and are anxiously waiting to see if our country goes over the fiscal cliff. Greenbacker and the cows on his farm are key players in the process.

"Some of the programs we rely on will no longer be in effect and we're not sure exactly what will happen," he told Eyewitness News.

For several years, American farms and consumers have benefited from a farm bill. It's comprised of several different programs and subsidies, but most importantly, the bill has allowed the government to keep milk prices stable.

However, now, all of that is on the chopping block. So when the farm bill expires at the end of the year, the milk rates will too.

"It will go back to a previous pricing formula, which really has no relation to any markets today," Greenbacker said.

Greenbacker and other experts said that could double the current price of milk, "which would be devastating for the dairy industry."

"It'll slow the business in half if this happens with milk, right in half," said Bob Mounts, who is the manager of the Durham General Store. 

Greenbacker said he is confident that a farm bill will pass in some way, shape or form. So if it's not lumped into the fiscal cliff solution, he's hoping that it'll be worked out independently.

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