Citing higher energy cost in 2001, the California Department of Food and Agriculture approved a decrease in the minimum milk price processors can pay producers.

The decrease in farm gate milk prices, which will average two percent, took effect January 1. The price adjustment was approved for processors of manufactured dairy products such as cheese, butter, ice cream, yogurt and powdered milk. CDFA sets the minimum price that processors can pay producers for their milk.

The decision was made after hearings held last month by CDFA showed that processors are paying significantly higher prices for energy compared to two years ago.