U.S. Milk Production Update – Dec ’15
According to USDA, Nov ’15 U.S. milk production was up 0.6% YOY, at 16,643 million pounds, setting a new November production record. Production also increased MOM, finishing 0.5% higher on a daily average basis. U.S. milk production has reached seasonal lows in October during eight of the past ten years prior to increasing during the month of November. U.S. milk production remained significantly higher on a YOY basis throughout the final months of 2014, as shown below, however production growth has decelerated over much of the past 12 months. The Nov ’15 YOY growth rate of 0.6% finished above the 23 month low experienced in Oct ’15 but remained significantly below the ’14-’15 annual growth rate of 1.9%. YOY production gains on a percentage basis continue to be led by South Dakota (+13.1%), followed by Michigan (+6.4%) and Wisconsin (+4.3%). California milk production declined YOY for the 12th consecutive month, finishing 4.4% lower, while production in New Mexico, Virginia, Texas, Kansas, Oregon, Utah and Washington also finished lower than the previous year. California, New Mexico, Kansas, Oregon and Washington experienced lower YOY milk per cow yields while California, Virginia, Texas, Kansas and Oregon experienced reductions in their milk cow herds. Overall, the U.S. milk cow herd held steady MOM during Nov ’15, finishing at 9,313,000 head, which remains 29,000 head more than November of last year. The U.S. milk per cow yield increased YOY for the first time in three months, finishing 0.2% higher than the previous year. Milk per cow yields continue to trend higher YOY in the Midwest, more than offsetting declining milk per cow yields in the Western United States. Milk per cow yields increased by an average of 2.0% YOY within Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa and Illinois while yields declined 1.2% YOY on average within California, Idaho, Washington and Oregon. Wisconsin milk per cow yields remained higher than California milk per cow yields for the fifth consecutive month during Nov ’15. California yields had finished higher than Wisconsin yields for 57 years prior to the past five months. The only MOM decline in the milk cow herd was exhibited in California (-1,000 head) while the only MOM increase in the milk per herd was experienced in Illinois (+1,000 head). YOY increases in milk cow herds continue to be led by Michigan (+11,000 head) and South Dakota (+11,000 head), followed by Idaho (+8,000 head) and Wisconsin (+7,000 head). Texas (-8,000 head), California (-4,000 head), Virginia, (-2,000 head), Oregon (-1,000 head), Ohio (-1,000 head), Kansas (-1000 head) and Vermont (-1,000 head) experienced YOY reductions in their milk cow herds.