For milk, the government subsidizes the dairy industry and sets production limits, which means taxpayers and consumers are paying more for a gallon of milk than they should be.
And the current version of the farm bill will make such market distortions even worse. The new Dairy Management Supply Program will set milk prices and effectively tax dairy farmers if prices fall below those price controls. The government will then use that tax money to purchase products, controlling the supply.
Dairy farmers are not happy about this, and are meeting with members of Congress this month in order to discuss their issues with the farm bill. Wonderful. We know what that will mean: dairy farmers will receive special consideration and carve-outs within the farm bill, further muddling the bill and promoting corporate welfare.
With this kind of control over something so basic to our diets, it’s no wonder the farm bill has stalled in Congress. Now, lawmakers need to work to remove these kinds of market-distorting special handouts, not just because they promote cronyism, but because, seriously, “milk does a body good.”