Recently, President Trump went on a small rampage against Canada for blocking imports of one particular type of milk from the United States.
The details of this particular dispute aren’t that interesting or important. What is remarkable, though, is Canada’s system for managing its dairy industry, which is the underlying cause of Trump’s complaint. When it comes to milk, Canada rejects free markets, free trade, and the policy advice of most mainstream economists. And as a result, Canadian dairy farmers live in a completely different world from those in the U.S.
When’s the last time you had a glass of cow’s milk?
Americans are drinking a lot less milk than they used to. According to the U. S. Department of Agriculture, the average person drinks 18 gallons a year. Back in the 1970s it was more like 30 gallons a year. We once hoisted a glass with dinner, soaked our breakfast cereal or dipped into the occasional milkshake. This habitual milk drinking was no accident.