If you’ve noticed that your regular gallon of milk at the grocery store is getting more expensive, it could be for a number of reasons.
Indeed, there is a saying in the dairy industry “Only five people in the world know how milk is priced in America – and four of them are dead.”
But one factor that could drive prices higher is rising temperatures due to climate change.
Researchers have found that when temperatures rise, dairy cows may respond by producing less milk, PBS NewsOver reported. and with emissions Threatening to make heat waves worse and prolong the warm season, This could mean less milk production from cows across the country.
Andrew Novakovic, the EV Baker Professor of Agricultural Economics at Cornell University, told USA Today that “it’s certainly possible” that cows that produce less milk can drive up higher prices for consumers.
But there are many other factors that may come into play, including demand for milk, regulation of dairy costs from the federal government, and retailers’ willingness to absorb price increases. agriculture too plays its role in global emissions of greenhouse gases.
“If there is a reduction in production, which people would have expected otherwise, there are a lot of mechanisms by which a tightening in production will result in a higher price, as will anything else,” Novakovic said.
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Professor Stephen Devdas at Texas Tech University, Emmabeth Thompson, stresses that warmer temperatures may affect small farms the most because of the cost of keeping cows cool with fans and more.
“For them to survive, they need to see high milk prices,” he said. “If the price doesn’t rise as much as the cost of production, many farmers are going to go out of business.”
Novakovic agreed that farmers would have to bear the initial cost of keeping their cows comfortably, whether that meant using the cooling system more frequently or more intensively than usual.
“There are days that are more extreme, which are perfectly in line with climate change scenarios, and those more extreme days may put some people in a place their current existing management systems are not really designed to deal with.” Gone,” he said. .
“It’s certainly something to note and it could become an issue, but also to say that there are systems in place to deal with it,” Novakovic said.
So with the prices of grocery staples Already growing for many families, Rising temperatures could signal bad news for dairy farmers and consumers alike.