September 1, 2023: July Milk Production Falls

July marked a turning point for our nation’s milk supply, with production down 0.5% from a year ago to 19.075 billion pounds, according to the USDA Milk Production Report released last week. This was the first year-over-year decline since May 2022 when production fell 0.4 percent. The decline comes after growth in the first half…

August 25, 2023: A Cost of Doing Business

We were all sad to see Zach Myers leave our team last week to pursue a new opportunity working in member services with a regional dairy cooperative. Ironically, my first deep dive into milk markets and pricing came when I was working in member communications for another cooperative back in the early 2000s. One of…

August 18, 2023: Exports Through June 2023

The export market has not been as friendly to the U.S. this year as it has been over the last 5. From 2018 to 2022, 4 of the 5 years saw record export volumes (2018, 2020, 2021, and 2022), and 2 of those years, 2021 and 2022, also set record values. Just like in domestic…

August 11, 2023: Crop Progress

We are more than halfway through our growing season here in Pennsylvania. It will not be too long until folks are gearing up to start chopping corn silage, followed by combining soybeans and corn.  This growing season has not been without its challenges. Pennsylvania had a decent start to planting but then experienced the driest…

August 4, 2023: DMC Hits Record Low Margin

The June Dairy Margin Coverage (DMC) margin was announced earlier this week at $3.65 per cwt. This sets a record low for the second consecutive month. It is also the first time in program  history that triggers an indemnity at every available margin coverage, falling below the $4.00 per cwt catastrophic margin coverage that is…

July 28, 2023: July

At $14.91 per cwt, the Class III price dropped below the $15 mark for the first time in more than three years. The June price is $9.42 per cwt  less than June 2022. With just a few days left in July, it is possible that July Class III will fall below $14, also for the…

July 21, 2023: Corn and Soybean Supply and Demand

The Dairy Margin Coverage (DMC) feed cost has increased year-over-year since 2020. The DMC feed cost is calculated by summing the USDA announced average corn, soybean meal (SBM), and  superior alfalfa hay prices, all on a hundredweight basis. The DMC program began in 2019, and the DMC feed price that year averaged $8.99 per cwt…

July 14, 2023: Dairy Product Output Increasing

Although U.S. cow numbers peaked in March at 9.446 million, falling 16,000 head since then to 9.430 million in April and May, cow numbers are still above what they were one year ago.  Increased cow numbers and increased milk cow efficiency have led to milk production increasing year-over-year (YOY) for the first 5 months of…

July 7, 2023: May DMC Margins and 2023 Projections

Further degradation of the Dairy Margin Coverage (DMC) margin continued through May. On June 30, the May DMC margin was announced as $4.83 per cwt. This represents a record low, falling 20 cents below the previous low of $5.03 per cwt set in August of 2021. Based on June 30 DMC projections, feed costs are…

June 30, 2023: June

The Year-over-year (YOY) growth in the U.S. herd size and milk per cow continues to increase total milk production across the country. Ample domestic milk supply along with increased international competition from the European Union are driving milk prices down. With drought conditions across a large part of the U.S. and geo-political issues in other…