Milk Prices Soar

Another consumer alert to pass along, four dollars a gallon is what some industry insiders are predicting by the end of this summer. No, we're not talking about a gallon of gas, but rather milk.

If you’re lactose intolerant, these are your lucky days because a gallon of milk may soon have a sour taste to everyone.

For many Americans the milk these heifers produce plays a major role in their complete diet. Many low-carb plans list dairy products as good eats, and consumers are snapping them up.

"I buy cheese, milk, ice cream, cottage cheese, sometimes dips, but not real often. Your basic milk products," says shopper George Hess.

But those basic milk products are becoming more costly every day because there are fewer dairy cows thanks to high beef prices and the Canadian mad cow scare. There is also a shortage of hormone to boost the production of milk.

There are many factors being given for the rising cost of milk, but it really boils down to simple supply and demand. Right now the demand is quite high and the supply is quite low. Estimates are that the price of a gallon of milk could go up by at least 50 cents.

Hines Boyd, dairy director of the Florida Department of Agriculture, expects this spike to last six to nine months, and that's good news for dairy farmers.

"They hope the prices stay up long enough for them to pay off their debts they accumulated when milk prices were so low over the last two years. A lot of them went out of business at that time,” says Boyd.

The price spike will be noticeable over the next few months at least until the fall when milk prices are expected to level out. Bulk buyers will take the greatest hit from the high prices. A pizza place manager adds that the price of mozzarella cheese has gone through the roof.