You may have a legitimate reason to cry over spilled milk in the coming weeks.
Analysts are warning that milk prices are on the rise and that March could see the cost of a gallon of milk hit record highs.
U.S. dairy analyst Jerry Dryer said, "Demand has been greater than supply for the last several months.”
Driving the price jump is a combination of factors.
First there is a major global demand for the dairy product. There is also the matter of stagnant milk production in other countries, which has led to a major uptick in the exportation of U.S. milk in recent months.
Dryer says that the price of milk has risen to $23 per hundredweight from $17-$18 per hundredweight this time last year.
The pricing is only going to get steeper as time passes.
Despite the sharp rise in demand, farmers are struggling to meet it.
Efforts to increase milk production have been impacted by the high cost of feeding cattle and poor weather. The recent droughts in California have had a largely negative effect on cattle owners in the region.
— Glyn Lucas (@GlynALucas) February 21, 2014
The concept of supply and demand is basic enough, but what does this mean for American households?
It may mean it's time to consider alternative sources to traditional dairy products. Some lactose-intolerant U.S. citizens have long sought alternatives to milk. As some question the health benefits of drinking milk at all, a number of Americans have already moved on from the routine of buying a gallon of milk.
Currently popular milk substitutes include soy milk, coconut milk, and almond milk. These items are typically available in the same area of the store as one finds milk, but there are recipes available on the web if you would prefer "homemade" versions.
As milk gets pricier and pricier, it may turn out to be a necessary change.
Image via Wikimedia Commons