An (almost) daily recap of dairy information: Feb. 25, 2011
USDA’s Risk Management Agency increased funds available for the Livestock Gross Margin for Dairy (LGM-Dairy) insurance pilot program. The program allows producers to insure a margin between feed costs and milk income. Recent program popularity stretched USDA premium subsidies and underwriting capacity by some coverage providers.
Cull cow numbers higher
Last Friday’s USDA January 2011 Milk Production report revealed U.S. milk cow numbers were up about 68,000 head from a year ago, to 9.157 million head.
This Friday, USDA estimated 263,900 culled dairy cows were slaughtered under federal inspection in January 2011, up about 31,800 head from January 2010.
That would indicate a net of nearly 100,000 new replacements (either heifers or cows) entered the milking herd compared to a year ago.
Block, butter up; Class III futures rebound
Closing on Friday, Feb. 25:
Cheddar barrels: unchanged, at $1.9500/lb.
Cheddar blocks: up 0.25¢, to $1.9875/lb.
Butter: up 1.0¢, to $2.02/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: higher, +1¢ to +66¢/cwt. through January 2012, with largest jumps March-July 2011.
Corn futures: +14.2¢ to +26.2¢/bushel through December 2012.
Soybean futures: mostly +33¢ to +47¢/bushel through November 2012.
Soybean meal futures: steady to +$10.10/ton through December 2012.
The week in review
Last week, it was all but certain that cheese would hit $2/lb., but that didn’t happen this week, according to DairyLine Radio’s Lee Meilke.
After 23 consecutive sessions of gain, CME cheddar blocks took a one-day break on Thursday, before gaining another 0.25¢ on Friday. Blocks closed the week at $1.9875/lb., up 3.5¢ on the President’s Day holiday-shortened week, and 64.75¢ more than the corresponding week a year ago.
Cheddar barrels showed a fissure Wednesday, inching down 0.5¢, but gained back 1¢ on Thursday, and closed Friday at $1.95/lb., also up 3.5¢ on the week and 66¢ more than a year ago. Thirteen cars of blocks traded hands on the week; 10 of barrels.
Cash butter closed Friday at $2.02/lb., up 1.5¢ on the week and 60.5¢ more than the corresponding week a year ago. Seven cars were sold.
Cash Grade A nonfat dry milk closed Friday at $1.8325/lb., up 0.25¢ on the week. Extra Grade held all week at $1.80.
Monday: DMI Update
If you don’t tell your story, someone else will, notes California dairy producer and National Dairy Board member Ray Prock. In Monday’s DairyLine broadcast, Prock, who milks about 450 cows, discusses how the national dairy checkoff helps connect producers and consumers.
• UW-Madison dairy judges first at Southwestern Intercollegiate Dairy Judging Contest
• OSU Extension offers two ways to learn about composting livestock
• Missouri offers dairy business planning grants
• Tri-State Dairy Nutrition Conference scheduled at Fort Wayne
• Wisconsin dairy tax credit advances
• Holterman to speak at 9th Annual Western Wisconsin Heart of the Farm Conference
In the last few years, we have watched an increasing attack on corn. The skewed reasoning is: corn syrup is available, reasonably priced, and good for the average person, therefore; it must be bad! This is the kind of logic that has been applied to farmed salmon, Big Macs, lower taxes, capitalism and pasteurized milk, Baxter Black writes in his monthly column, On the Edge of Common Sense.
Check for daily DPW news updates at www.dairybusiness.com.
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Dave Natzke, Editor