The Globe And Mail reports the involvement by government agencies in Canada makes calculating the price of milk more difficult than grains on the commodity market.

The system used by the Canadian Dairy Commission and provincial marketing boards is over 40 years old. The system protects dairy farmers from conglomerates while controlling the amount of milk produced by dairies.

Farmers must have a quota for their dairy. The fee has increased from $16,000 per cow in the 1990s to over $20,000 today. Those against the quota system claim it makes entering the dairy business nearly impossible.

Canadian prices for dairy products are higher than other areas of the world and stiff tariffs on some dairy products mean most of the milk, cheese and butter in the country is locally produced.

Dairy organizations haven’t changed the system because it’s efficient.

“So, when you compare honestly, Canadians pay fair retail prices, Canadian dairy farmers get a fair share and the Canadian government does not subsidize milk a penny,” says Bill Mitchell, a spokesman for the organization. “That’s why Canada is keeping its milk marketing system - because it works.”

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Source: www.theglobeandmail.com