Milk makers in isles seek price boost
Got money? A gallon of milk may soon be going up in Hawaii.
The state's two remaining dairies are seeking a 20 percent hike in milk prices because of the rising costs of feed and fuel.
On Tuesday, the Board of Agriculture on will consider the request by Clover Leaf Dairy and Island Dairy to increase the minimum paid to milk producers by 52 cents a gallon to $3.05.
If approved, the proposed increase will go before a public hearing on the Big Island.
The proposed increase follows an increase of nearly 26 cents a gallon that went into effect last year, which followed a 25 cent-per-gallon increase in 2005.
Clover Leaf Dairy on the Big Island has 800 cows and produces about 3,300 gallons of milk daily.
Owner Ed Boteilho said his operation has been "bamboozled" by the higher gas, transportation and feed costs.
In the past eight years, four Oahu dairies and three on the Big Island have shut down.
A University of Hawaii study found that Hawaii dairies have been challenged by the price of ultra-pasteurized milk from the mainland.