"But the biggest force driving up milk prices is the same one that has driven up prices for conventional commodities like iron ore and copper: a roaring global economy. Rising incomes, from China and India to Latin America and the Middle East, are lifting millions of people out of poverty and into the middle class.
It turns out that, along with zippy cars and flat-panel TVs, milk is the mark of new money, a significant source of protein that factors into much of any affluent person's diet. Milk goes into infant formulas, chocolates, ice cream and cheese. Most baked goods contain butter, and coffee chains like Starbucks sell more milk than coffee." (thanks D.)