U.S. Milk Production Update – Mar ’16
Executive Summary U.S. milk production figures provided by USDA were recently updated with values spanning through Feb ’16. Highlights from the updated report include: • U.S. milk production remained higher on a YOY basis for the 26th consecutive month, finishing up 1.0%. • YOY production gains on a percentage basis continue to be led by South Dakota while production in New Mexico declined the most YOY as effects from Winter Storm Goliath continue to be experienced. • The U.S. dairy cow herd rebounded slightly off of the 11 month low experienced in Jan ’16, finishing up 2,000 head during Feb ’16. Additional Report Details According to USDA, Feb ’16 U.S. milk production was up 1.0% YOY, at 16.9 billion pounds, setting a new February production record. U.S. milk production has increased YOY for 26 consecutive months through February. Production also increased MOM, finishing 2.0% higher on a daily average basis. The MOM increase in production was slightly higher than the ten year average January – February seasonal increase of 1.8%. U.S. milk production remained significantly higher on a YOY basis throughout the final months of 2014, however production growth decelerated over the majority of 2015. The Feb ’16 YOY growth rate of 1.0% was the highest experienced in the past six months 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 (+10.6%), followed by Michigan (+7.8%), Wisconsin (+5.1%) and New York (+4.6%). California milk production declined YOY for the 15th consecutive month, finishing 2.9% lower, while production in New Mexico, Texas, Utah, Florida, Virginia, Illinois and Pennsylvania also finished below the previous year. New Mexico production (-6.0%) continued to lead all declines as effects from Winter Storm Goliath continued to be experienced, however the YOY decline was only half as large as the decline experienced in Jan ’16. California, New Mexico, Texas, Utah and Virginia all experienced lower YOY milk per cow yields in addition to YOY reductions in their milk cow herds during Feb ’16. Overall, the U.S. milk cow herd increased by 2,000 head MOM during Feb ’16 from the 11 month low experienced in the previous month. The total U.S. milk cow herd currently stands at 9,312,000 head, remaining 4,000 head more than February of last year. The U.S. milk per cow yield increased YOY for the fourth consecutive month, finishing 0.9% higher than the previous year on a daily average basis. 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 2.2% YOY within Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa and Illinois while yields declined 0.2% YOY on average within California, Idaho, Washington and Oregon. MOM increases in the milk cow herd were experienced in Michigan (+1,000 head) and New Mexico (+1,000 head). No MOM declines in the milk cow herd were experienced throughout Feb ’16. YOY increases in milk cow herds were led by South Dakota (+11,000 head) and Michigan (+11,000 head), followed by Idaho (+7,000 head) and Wisconsin (+5,000 head). Texas (-13,000 head), New Mexico (-12,000 head) and California (-5,000 head) experienced the largest YOY reductions in their milk cow herds.