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BRIEFLY

October 21, 1987

A sharp drop in the wholesale prices of butter and cheese has triggered a surge in government purchases of dairy surpluses to prop up the price of milk, an Agriculture Department report said. Until now, department analysts have said that 1987 purchases of surplus dairy products under the federal milk support program would be held to about 5 billion pounds of milk, less than half of last year's purchases. But, with the market price sagging, the department's Commodity Credit Corp. has been forced to buy more products, meaning that purchases for all of 1987 probably will total about 6 billion pounds, the report said.

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