Milk to be $8 a gallon? - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

Milk to be $8 a gallon?

Without a decision by year-end, U.S. Farm policy would revert back to the agriculture act of 1949, which makes milk go up based on inflation - causing that swell in the supermarket. Without a decision by year-end, U.S. Farm policy would revert back to the agriculture act of 1949, which makes milk go up based on inflation - causing that swell in the supermarket.

NEW YORK (NBC) - Dive into any family fridge and you'd find pretty much the same staple products packed into the cooler.

"Well, we got some specialty cheeses here we got as a gift for Christmas," says Dave Drennan with Missouri Dairy Association.

While nothing's set in stone, early predictions for milk prices are sour. In fact, in the new year, they could double.

Right now, an average gallon of milk costs $3.60, so pretty soon it could be up to $8 a pop.

"If dairy prices rise too fast to a higher level that folks can't afford, there are so many alternatives in the market place, from the power drinks, the nutrition drinks, the sodas, the waters and all that competition people will switch," predicts Drennan.

Financial Analyst Juli Niemann doesn't see that happening, but rather envisions the dairy bill drying up families' disposable incomes.

"When you're only paying a certain percentage of your income in food and that percentage starts rising, then you have less money to spend on toys, games, prizes, clothing, furniture, in other words, discretionary items," explains Niemann.

And all of those fears have a foundation on Capitol Hill, where tied up in talks about the fiscal cliff is also the farm bill, which includes the dairy security act.

Without a decision by year-end, U.S. Farm policy would revert back to the agriculture act of 1949, which makes milk go up based on inflation - causing that swell in the supermarket.

Copyright 2012 NBC. All rights reserved.

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