Starting in October, major South Korean milk companies will raise their product prices, following the Korea Dairy Committee's decision to increase the cost of raw milk by the highest rate in 10 years.
Namyang Dairy Products said it will raise the price of its 900 milliliter-carton of milk by 4.6 percent starting in October. As a result, the products' price at discount stores is estimated to rise to 2,900 won ($2.15), from its current 2,800 won.
The company added it will also raise the price of its dairy products such as fermented milk, flavored milk and cheese by an average of 7 percent.
Another major Korean milk company, Maeil Dairies, announced it is also scheduled to raise the price of its fresh milk products by an average of 4 to 6 percent, starting in October.
The company added it will increase the cost of its processed milk products such as flavored milk by 5 to 6 percent, and the price of fermented milk and cheese products by 6 to 9 percent starting next month.
"The 900 milliliters of Maeil Milk is therefore expected to be sold at around 2,900 won in discount stores, starting in October," said a Maeil Dairies official.
Seoul Milk, operated by the nation's largest milk producer Seoul Dairy Cooperative, also decided to raise the price of its 1-liter milk carton sold at discount stores by 3 percent. With the price hike, the estimated price of a 1-liter Seoul Milk carton at discount stores is expected to cost some 2,900 won.
The chains' increases in milk prices come as on August, the Korea Dairy Committee decided to raise the price of two types of raw milk starting October, citing a surge in costs for labor, logistics and fodder.
The cost of raw milk used in fresh dairy products such as milk was raised by 88 won per liter, while the price of raw milk used in the production of processed dairy products such as cheese was raised by 87 won per liter.
Raw milk used in fresh dairy products will cost 1,084 won per liter, while raw milk used in processed dairy products will cost 887 won per liter starting next month. This will be the biggest price hike rate since 2013.
In 2013, the price of both types of raw milk was increased by 106 won.