4 Pages

of of of surviving if they continue to produce raw milk to be processed into

enforcement will most likely be sometime in the early 1990s. But if and when the import restrictions are lifted, Japanese dairy products will have no chance surviving the competition from imported products, because the prices of skim milk and butter produced in Japan are, respectively, around 4.5 times and more than 5 times the international prices. Most dairy farmers in Hokkaido have no

The emergence of the phenomenon of relative surplus due to the shrinkage of the market gives rise, by necessity, to falling prices. From the start of production readjustment of raw milk, the government support price for raw milk for processing was frozen. This continued for many years, and since 1986 it has actually been lowered. And the lowering of the government support price has produced downward pressure on the price of raw milk for drinking, which price is determined through negotiations between dairy farmers and milk processing companies. The decline in the number of dairy farmers is indeed the direct consequence of the declining producer's price. The escalation of the war between the dairy farmers of Hokkaido and those in Tokyo's hinterland will surely force many more farmers out of business. And the winners in this internecine war must then fight in an international war with imported products priced at one-quarter to one-fifth of their own products. How many Japanese dairy farmers will be able to survive?