Professor Bob Cropp’s March 2015 Dairy Situation & Outlook full report is now available for download at UW Understanding Dairy Markets. Also, for a video podcast including Dr. Bob Cropp and Dr. Mark Stephenson discussing the March 2015 Dairy Situation & Outlook, please visit Program on Dairy Markets & Policy.
The following is a portion of that report:
It is significant that the leading milk producing state continues to experience a decline in milk production. Compared to a year ago, California’s milk production was down 2.6% in January and 3.8% in February. While California had 0.1% fewer cows, lower milk production was due to 3.7% less milk per cow. The second leading dairy state, Wisconsin had 0.5% more cows and 3.9% more milk per cow increasing milk production by 4.3%. Milk production was relatively strong in other Upper Midwest states with Minnesota up 4.3%, Iowa up 4.8%, and South Dakota up 9.6%. In the Northeast, milk production was up 2.3% for New York, 2.0% for Pennsylvania and 2.4% for Ohio with Michigan up 7.8%. Milk production increases for some other states show Texas up 4.2%, Idaho 1.5%, and Arizona 2.9%. Even Florida had an increase of 4.3%.
We can expect total milk production to pick up during the spring flush that could strain the capacity of some manufacturing plants in the Upper Midwest and the Northeast and put some downward pressure on milk prices. But, if the growth in milk production compared to a year ago continues less than 2% as it did in February, then there is optimism that milk prices could average higher than earlier forecast, but still average $6 to $7 lower for the year than last year