Deal to Stay on "Dairy Cliff" Not Ideal for All Farmers
KREX News Room
MESA COUNTY, Colo. In addition to the fiscal cliff, lawmakers are also tackling the dairy cliff. Back in October Congress failed to pass a new farm bill, letting it expire. Now, Congress reached a deal to extend the 2008 farm bill.
On a positive note, coming to a deal will help keep milk prices and other commodities from skyrocketing. However, dairy farmers are very disappointed. The new farm bill had provisions that would have helped them after a very tough year.
Milk has been a political topic many families have been closely following at the market
Helen Raymond, co-owner of Raymond's Dairy, said, "Milk is a very valuable thing. You can totally live off of milk."
Lawmakers decision to vote on extending the 2008 Farm Bill is giving many consumers a sigh of relief.
"At least they didn't just let it go away, because if milk had gone up to $8, nobody would've drank milk. And then where would we be?" said Raymond.
Bob Raymond, co-owner of Raymond's Dairy, said, "I don't think people would've bought the milk cause it would've been too high, and the dairymen would've ended up losing."
However, Bob anticipates that the price of milk will most likely continue to fluctuate, something he says could have possibly been avoided had the new farm bill passed.
"We'd like a little bit of certainty that we can stay in business and pay our bills. The Dairy Security Act that was in the farm bill would do that without raising the cost to government, and I think it would stabilize the milk prices," Bob said.
Extending the farm bill was much better option than doing nothing at all, which would've been devastating to all farmers. However, for dairy farmers, the 2008 Farm Bill doesn't help enough.
Bob said, "Our feed costs have doubled this year and it's been very difficult because we don't get enough money out of selling milk to pay for the cost of running a dairy."
Raymond and other dairy farmers reached out to lawmakers to pass the new farm bill, and are upset over the outcome.
"They've extended it for a year because they didn't do their job and had to have some kind of a farm bill. I spoke to some of the people on the east slope this morning and I think most everyone's going to be disappointed if we don't get a little bit of help for the dairy industry with the Farm Bill," Bob said.
While these dairy farmers continue to work hard at the farm, they'd like to see lawmakers work harder for them at the capitol.