Deal Reached to Avoid Hefty Milk Price Increases

Families already having trouble paying the weekly grocery bill can be thankful that lawmakers have agreed to extend a 2008 law that prevents milk prices from skyrocketing to levels of $7 or more a gallon.

The current law dealing with farm subsidies was set to expire on January 1, 2013, but lawmakers have tentatively agreed to a one-year extension to avoid having not only milk but also all dairy prices jump by more than double in some cases.

Frank Lucas, chairman of the House Agriculture Committee and Tom Cole, a member of the House of Representatives from Oklahoma, were among the Congressional leaders urging the President to sign the extension, although there was not a consensus if the law should be extended 9 months or for a full year.

The extension of the law also includes provisions to subsidize farmers when their expenses for feed are high compared with very low prices for the milk their cows produce.