With cheese  prices slipping while raw materials prices multiply , producers of Italy's parmigiano reggiano are turning to the government to remedy a dire situation. The wholesale price of parmiggiano reggiano has fallen  below the cost of producing it. Cheese prices have dropped as the result of two factors. First, the availability of parmesan has increased: The sector produces 11 percent more cheese compared to eight years ago. Second, Italians are reacting to the economic downturn by purchasing less of the so-called "King of Cheese."
Producers complain that a select group of supermarkets are able to dictate low prices by buying the bulk of the cheese produced. "This is a prized product. There ought to be policies to safeguard those who produce it," said farmers group Coldiretti.
The group is lobbying the government to temporarily suspend an antitrust law so that producers can cooperate together to reduce output, rather than being wiped out by the competitive market.
Have you heard about the parmigiano reggiano crisis? Have you bought less parmesan cheese as a result of the rising cost of raw materials?