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Farmers worry about dairy prices as deadline nears

Published On: Dec 18 2012 06:22:49 AM CST   Updated On: Dec 18 2012 06:22:00 AM CST
cow in grass field

Stephen Davies/SXC


While the White House and Congress struggle to avert the economic "fiscal cliff," dairy farmers are worried that the outcome of the effort could affect the farm bill and milk prices.

The last farm bill, passed in 2008, is expiring. If Congress doesn't pass a new bill by Jan. 1 or extend key provisions, certain factors kick in that could send milk prices to $6 a gallon.

Some dairy producers worry that shoppers would switch to exported dairy products.

Agriculture industry leaders hope that new farm legislation can be attached to any fiscal package the White House and Congress reach this month. Major tax increases and spending cuts are scheduled to go into effect if no deal is reached by Jan. 1.