Editorial - New milk plan a must
A national milk-pricing system set up during the Great Depression no longer makes any sense. On that we agree with a federal judge, whose ruling voided it last Wednesday. But at least it was a system, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture needs to get cracking on a replacement that will pass court scrutiny.
In his ruling, U.S. District Judge David Doty said the old pricing system wasn't based on any current reality. In brief, it held that the farther a dairy farm is located from Eau Claire, Wisconsin, the higher-priced its milk would be.
Eau Claire was chosen because it was then the nation's top dairy-producing region, and was deemed to have an advantage over other areas, which needed to transport milk longer distances to market. But California has since become the top dairy producer and farmers in the midwest have argued that the old system discriminated against them. Last Wednesday, they got a judge to agree.