Despite a recent, slight increase in prices, Wisconsin dairy farmers are hurting. Consumers were paying 22 dollars per hundredweight of milk in June, but dairy farmers were only seeing 12 dollars, according to Vernon County Extension Agent Tim Rehbein.
“People ask me where did that ten dollar per hundredweight of milk go? It’s still in the food dollar, but the consumer/retail level is getting that ten dollars per hundredweight,” says Rehbein.
Rehbein says somewhere along the line of dairy production, from processors to wholesalers to consumers, someone is making that money — but it’s not farmers. “if the retail/consumer level doesn’t drop their price, we’re not going to get more product flowing through the market, and get the inventories of dairy products down.”
And there’s another problem: Rehbein says consumers are already reluctant to buy dairy products in a down economy.