Milk-feed price ratio improves; cull cow prices upPrint
September milk-feed price ratio improves
Slightly higher monthly average milk prices combined with lower feed prices to push the preliminary September 2013 milk-feed price ratio higher. At 1.86, the index is up from 1.68 in August 2013 and 1.59 in September 2012, and is the highest since November 2011.
The index is based on the current milk price in relationship to feed prices for a ration of 51% corn, 8% soybeans and 41% alfalfa hay. Despite the improvement, the September 2013’s index marks the 30th consecutive month the milk-feed price ratio is below 2.0.
The U.S. average all-milk price was $19.80/cwt., compared to $19.50/cwt. in August 2013 and $19.70/cwt. in September 2012.
September corn, at $5.28/bu., was down 93¢ from August and $1.70 less than September 2012. It's the lowest U.S. average corn price since January 2011.
September 2013 soybeans averaged $13.80/bu., down 30¢ from August and down 50¢ from September 2012. It's the lowest U.S. average soybean price since April 2012.
Alfalfa hay averaged $194/ton in September, down $6 from August and $12 less than September 2012. It's the lowest U.S. average hay price since January 2012.
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Milk-feed price ratio
|Sept. 2013||Aug. 2013*||Sept. 2012|
|Alfalfa hay ($/ton)||194||200||206|
* Revised from previous reports Source: USDA
Cull cow prices higher
Estimated U.S. September 2013 cull cow prices (beef and dairy combined) averaged $84.00/cwt., according to the USDA/NASS Ag Prices report. The average is up $1.20/cwt. from August’s revised estimate, and $4.80/cwt. more than September 2012.
Current trend: September’s average was the third consecutive monthly increase. It's the highest since June 2012. The year-to-date average is $81.41/cwt., compared to $82.22/cwt. for the same period a year ago.