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N.B. milk prices to rise Sunday

The New Brunswick Farm Products Commission will raise the price consumers in that province pay for milk by 3.6 cents per litre starting Sunday (Feb. 1).

“The price of milk in New Brunswick, factoring in the mid-year price increase approved in September, has risen 4.5 per cent this year over last,” said Hazen Myers, chairman of the commission, in a release Friday.

“This increase is significantly lower than the 7.4 per cent increase in the overall cost of food items for the same period, as reported by Statistics Canada.”

The province’s dairy producers will now get an extra 3.04 cents per litre, which reflects the inventory cost of livestock feed now being used, but which was produced and harvested when energy and fertilizer costs were at an all-time high, the commission said.

“It is hoped that the current reduction in fuel prices will be sustained long enough to lower production costs during the next growing season,” the commission said. Processors will not receive an increase over the 1.45 cents per litre approved in September, and retailers will continue to receive their standard markup.

“The commission feels that by implementing these adjustments it has succeeded in upholding its mandate of balancing the interests of producers and processors while maintaining competitive prices for New Brunswick consumers,” Myers said.

School milk prices will not change for the coming school year, the commission said, noting that the price subsidy absorbed by producers and processors on school milk is now worth about $1.3 million per year.

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