FLUID MILK AND CREAM
REVIEW – WEST
(USDA Market News)
California dairy herds are maintaining a steady milk production. Component levels are slowly recovering as butterfat and protein levels are improving. Bottled milk demand is unchanged from a week ago. Milk volumes received at processing facilities are in good balance with current needs.
Milk handlers indicate that hauling issues are persisting, and transportation costs are rising. Farm milk output is steady across the state of Arizona.
Class I milk demand remained at the same level as last week. Weather conditions are improving, and dairy farmers expect milk production to increase in the coming weeks.
The conditions of alfalfa are generally rated 81 percent good to excellent, and two-thirds of the alfalfa acreage is currently being harvested.
Topsoil and subsoil moistures increased respectively to 96 percent and 95 percent compared to last week.
In New Mexico, farm milk is enough to meet the needs of all users.
The volume of milk going into bottling has remained the same compared to a week ago. A few extra loads of milk are available and are being shipped to the East to help meet processing obligations. Trucks and drivers continue to be limited for milk transportation.
Nevertheless, handlers are finding ways to have the milk delivered on time.
The fifth and sixth cuttings of alfalfa hay are taking place in New Mexico. Drought conditions are unchanged from last week, with 99.6 percent of the state abnormally dry or worse.
Pacific Northwest milk production is steady to higher. Industry contacts say intakes are a bit more than expected, but well balanced with processing needs. Pleasant fall weather is providing good cow comfort. Bottling demand is steady.
Milk production in the mountain states of Idaho, Utah and Colorado is following typical seasonal patterns. Manufacturers have plenty of milk available and are running at or near full schedules. By and large, milk loads are finding homes within the immediate region.
However, a few loads are getting shipped into neighboring states as a result of variable buyer needs and some maintenance schedules.
In the West, condensed skim is available to all users and it is expected to stay accessible for the remaining of the year. Cream inventories are unchanged compared to a week ago. Ice cream makers are taking less cream as they slow down production due to cooler temperatures. As a result, more cream is available for butter churning.
Western cream multiples covered a range of 1.10 to 1.28, depending on Class usages and basing points.
According to the NASS Dairy Products report, hard ice cream production in the West region for August 2018 is 13.3 million gallons, 3.5 percent lower than a month ago, and 18.4 percent below the previous year.
According to California Department of Food and Agriculture, August 2018 Class 1 sales in California totaled 51.0 million gallons, up 8.7 percent from last month, but down 3.0 percent from the previous year. From January through August 2018, Class 1 sales totaled 398.6 million gallons, down 3.0 percent from the comparable period in 2017.