Fluid Milk and Cream - Western U.S. Dairy Report

Some reports suggest that many California dairies are for sale, and some others are on the edge of going out of business.

California milk production trends are essentially flat. Temperatures have toned-down and weather conditions are helping keep herd stress down. Fat and protein levels are steady compared to last week.

Class 1 sales are generally even. Processing plants are running on active and planned schedules. Freight costs continue to be expensive because of hauling limitations.

Some reports suggest that many dairies are for sale, and some others are on the edge of going out of business.

Arizona milk supplies available to processors are slowly increasing this week. Heavy rains in the past weeks have delayed trucks from moving milk out of the dairy farms.

This week, total milk production is steadily increasing as the temperatures are appropriate for cows’ wellbeing, and milking cows are responding with increased milk output.

Handlers are pulling in more milk as they start filling holiday orders. Class I demand is flat while Class II sales are increasing. Some plant managers say that they are not producing any butter because they have enough demand for their cream.

New Mexico milk production is down compared to the previous week. Class I and II intakes have moved up, but Class III sales are keeping a steady tendency. Milk delivery plans have changed a little bit to accommodate a few plants that were down. The volumes of milk moving to the eastern region have softened a bit.

Overall, milk supplies are in good balance with sales. Pacific Northwest milk production is steady to lower. Parts of the region are starting to see the cool, wet weather that typifies the season. Industry contacts say milk intakes are down a little. But that said, there is still plenty of milk for most processing needs.

Bottling demand is steady, and many manufacturers are running facilities at or near full schedules.

Milk production in the mountain states of Idaho, Utah and Colorado has remained strong due to almost ideal cow comfort weather in parts of the region. Dairy contacts say they have seen a little of the typical seasonal decline, but intakes are in generally good balance with processing needs. Dairymen do not have any major concerns regarding feedstocks or near-term weather.

Most corn silage has good feed values and there is plenty of forage available for the winter. Hay prices are inching up slightly.

Superjacent to the daily issues of dairy cow care is the continued financial stress many farms are experiencing. Some farmers in the region were notified earlier this month they would be losing the market for their milk by year end.

The condensed skim market remains stable in the western region. Most loads continue to be used for nonfat dry milk processing.

In the West, cream demand is growing. More cream is currently being used in the manufacturing of sour cream, eggnog and cream cheese for the upcoming holidays.

As so, cream supplies have slightly decreased. Nonetheless, cream remains accessible to meet the needs of most buyers. This week, multiples for all usages are 1.10-1.31. Cream transportation continues to be affected by higher freight costs and drivers’ limited availability. Interest in contracting cream for 2019 has started to show.

National Advertised Prices at Major Retail Supermarket Outlets ending during the period of

Oct. 19-25:

Half Gallon, All Fat Tests

Organic: $4.11

Conventional: $2.37


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