Forget about oil, milk prices soar | SummitDaily.com
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Forget about oil, milk prices soar

KIM MARQUIS
Summit Daily/Reid Williams
ALL |

FRISCO – While the average consumer is worried about gas prices, Jack Craig is closely watching the price of milk.Milk is Craig’s beverage of choice. He prefers it over soda, juice or tea, and drinks a half-gallon per day. An engineer who manages seismic exploration projects for the oil industry, Craig works from his Frisco condominium where he consumes more milk than gas. The price of a gallon of milk is up almost 70 cents per gallon, according to Craig’s store receipts. He noticed the increase in mid-May, when he ran to the store with $2.50 in his pocket – what he had paid for a gallon three days prior – and the bill rang up to $3.19.

Craig, who tracks oil prices through his work, said in the same three-day period he paid more for milk, gas prices went up 14 cents per gallon. “Geez, maybe I’m in the wrong business,” he said. “Maybe I should go buy a cow.”The price increase for milk was forecast in April, but consumers started seeing changes at local grocery stores last month.Silverthorne resident Judy Ford said she noticed the increase. She purchased a gallon Tuesday – one of three or four gallons she said she’d purchase this week – at City Market in Dillon. The price was $3.39.

According to a story published in the Rocky Mountain News, price increases were expected due to a worldwide shortage of dairy products. Prices are set by the Federal Milk Market Administration, a division of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It raised the price distributors pay farmers for milk, and consumers are now feeling it in their pocketbooks.According to the News, low demand for the product in the past few years meant dairy farmers received lower prices. Some went out of business. The federal milk administration increased the price to distributors when dairy farmers agreed to produce less milk, but then the dairy supply was further reduced by a drought in world markets.Calls by the Summit Daily News to grocery store and dairy supplier public affairs offices were not returned or were answered with “no comment.”

Meanwhile, Craig is not crying over spilled milk. “I get ribbing from my friends for making extra money for the increase of the price of gas, which I am,” he said. “But the increase in the price of milk got me thinking, why aren’t people up in arms over the price of milk?”Kim Marquis can be reached at (970) 668-3998, ext. 249, or at kmarquis@summitdaily.com.


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