Milk Prices in Hawaii Go Up
By Beth Hillyer
HONOLULU (KHNL) - You are paying about a dollar more per gallon of milk than you were just six months ago.
The reason for the steep increase involves another pricey commodity, corn.
Farmers and the makers of ethanol are pushing up the price of corn.
The price of a gallon of milk in Hawaii has gone up more than one dollar since January.
About 80 percent of our milk is from the mainland.
Our milk prices are based on the price paid to farmers in Northern California.
Jeri Kahana with the State Department of Agriculture tells us, "The Honolulu milkshed price is based on the Northern California price so whatever the Northern California price is plus a 12 dollar differential for transportation costs."
A double whammy as fuel costs have increased as well.
Since January, milk's gone up nearly ten dollars per every hundred pounds of milk.
It was 13 dollars six months ago, now it's more than 23 dollars.
The state regulates the price of milk paid to dairy farmers but can't control the retail price.
The highest price we found on Oahu for a gallon of whole milk was $8.99 on sale for $7.49 if you have a value card.
The cheapest was Costco for $4.99 per gallon.
The reason for the price hike:
Kahana explains, "The demand for corn competition for corn because it can be sold for ethanol purposes which is driving the price of feed up substantially so the farmers have a higher cost of production."
So you may be saving a few cents at the pump but paying a premium for milk at the supermarket.