October 9, 2020: 2021 DMC Enrollment

The 2018 Farm Bill made the Dairy Margin Coverage (DMC) program available in 2019 as a much-improved version of the Margin Protection Program (MPP) that it replaced. DMC is margin-based insurance where the margin each month is calculated by subtracting the national corn, soybean meal and blended alfalfa hay price from the U.S. all-milk price….

October 2, 2020: September

Welcome to Fall 2020! It is amazing to me how fast this year has seemed to go by. There has certainly been a change in the weather in my part of Pennsylvania—we even a had some light frost a couple of mornings a week or so ago. Thankfully, it was not significant enough to kill…

September 25, 2020: CFAP 2

This has certainly been a year to remember. Unprecedented milk price volatility perhaps has left you not knowing what is going to happen next. At the end of 2019, market fundamentals were pointing to stronger prices in 2020 compared with 2019, which, for the most part, was a decent year. No market indicators were pointing…

2019 Fluid Milk Sales and Per Capita Consumption

September 18, 2020 Markets & Management Update: Each year in Aug/Sept., the USDA releases fluid milk sales and per capita consumption data for the previous year. The data is appended to a spreadsheet that shows historical numbers since 1975. It is quite interesting to look at the data and see how consumption and sales have…

September 11, 2020: Fall Harvest

Ever since I can remember, Fall has always been my favorite time of year. I grew up in Wilkes County, North Carolina, at the foot a small mountain range called the Brushy Mountains, which is part of the larger Blue Ridge Mountains that stretch from Georgia to South Central Pennsylvania. There are several reasons why…

September 4, 2020: Dairy Product Stocks

After a brief one-month decline in national milk production in May, June and July, milk production returned to positive year-over-year growth with May milk production up 0.5% and July milk production up 1.5% compared with a year ago. Increased milk production, coupled with an overall decrease in dairy product sales, translates to growing dairy product…

August 28, 2020: August

What a crazy year it has been so far! Volatility has been rough to deal with. April and May brought the lowest prices in over 10 years, followed by a record $8.90 per cwt month-to-month increase in the June Class III price. Unfortunately, this was largely offset by record negative Producer Price Differentials (PPD) across…

August 21, 2020: Crop Production

One thing that COVID-19 has not affected this year is Mother Nature. For much of the U.S., 2020 has had an excellent growing season, especially in the Midwest where most of the nation’s corn and soybeans are grown. The Pennsylvania growing season has not been as forthcoming with rainfall as other parts of the country….

August 14, 2020: 11th Annual Dairy Financial and Risk Management Conference to be Held Virtually

I feel like I start all these weekly articles with some sort of comment about COVID-19. I cannot help but start it that way again this week. COVID-19 in many ways has turned our lives upside down. In a matter of a couple of months, U.S. unemployment went from 3.5%, which was near an all-time…

August 7, 2020: CFAP Deadline Approaching

Plenty has happened over the last several months because of COVID-19. It has certainly been a roller coaster ride that does not seem to have stopped. The 2020 U.S. all-milk price has gone from a forecast of $19.25 per cwt in January to a low of $14.35 per cwt in April and has since rebounded…