An (almost) daily recap of dairy information: Feb. 23, 2011
‘Commercial’ dairies fell 3% in 2010
Commercially licensed dairy operations totaled 53,127 in 2010, according to data included in USDA’s February 2011 Milk Production report. That’s down about 3% from 2009, when there were 54,932 commercially licensed dairies. Wisconsin lost the most dairies, at 460, or about 3.5%. The number of California dairies declined by 110, or about 6%.
Looking at 5-year trends, the number of U.S. commercially licensed dairies declined about 18% since 2005, when there were 64,540 herds selling milk.
In 2002 – first year USDA reported the number of commercially licensed dairies – there were 74,100 dairies licensed to sell milk. Based on that total, the number of commercially licensed dairies has declined about 28%.
January Cold Storage report
January butter stocks totaled 118.9 million lbs., up 46% from December 2010, but still 29% less than January 2011, according to preliminary data in USDA’s latest Cold Storage report.
Total cheese stocks were estimated at 1.051 billion lbs., unchanged from December 2010, but 7% more than January 2010. The American cheese inventory, at 639 million lbs., was up 1% from December and 9% more than a year ago.
Escalating farmland prices have caught the attention of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC). The agency, which insures deposits and examines and supervises financial institutions for safety and soundness, will host a half-day symposium – “Don’t Bet the Farm: Assessing the Boom in U.S. Farmland Prices” – on March 10, in Arlington, Va. The program will feature panel discussions relating to current market conditions and risk management practices in agricultural finance. There is no cost, but pre-registration is required and space is limited. For more information on the symposium, visit http://www.fdic.gov/news/conferences/2011-03-10.html.
Has cheese topped out, or just taking a breath?
Closing on Wednesday, Feb. 23:
Cheddar barrels: down 0.5¢, to $1.90/lb.
Cheddar blocks: up 0.25¢, to $1.9850/lb.
Butter: unchanged, at $2.0050/lb.
Extra Grade nonfat dry milk: unchanged, at $1.80/lb.
Grade A nonfat dry milk: unchanged, at $1.8325/lb.
Class III milk futures: mixed to mostly lower, -54¢ to +6¢/cwt., through December 2012.
Corn futures: +6.6¢ to +12.4¢/bushel through December 2012.
Soybean futures: +19.0¢ to +24.6¢/bushel through November 2012.
Soybean meal futures: +$3.10 to +$6.00/ton through December 2012.
Thursday: MILC; cottonseed
Dairy producers will receive Milk Income Loss Contract (MILC) payments for January and February, but that’s likely it for the fiscal year which ends in September, according to National Milk Producers Federation’s Roger Cryan. The January rate should be about 11¢-12¢/cwt., with February’s payment about 20¢-40¢/cwt.
Meanwhile, the feed budget could get a break on at least one important commodity – cottonseed. Tom Wedegaertner, of Cotton Inc., said current high prices could encourage growers to add acres in 2011. He anticipates 1.5 million to 2 million more acres of cotton this year.
Two new reports from the Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) note the importance of the state’s dairy industry, and the need to support increased dairy education and research.
Check for daily DPW news updates at www.dairybusiness.com.
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Dave Natzke, Editor