FLUID MILK AND CREAM
REVIEW – WEST
(USDA Market News)
California farm milk is following a steady to downward production outline this week. Milk is being processed through the different Classes as scheduled.
Class 1 sales are steady, as is common for this time of the year. According to some contacts, more milk has moved to Class IV production since the beginning of this year due to equipment repair issues at some Class III manufacturing plants. Some loads of milk are finding homes in neighboring plants and out-of-state as certain manufacturers adjust their production schedules to take care of equipment issues.
Milk production in Arizona has remained strong although total output levels are slowly decreasing. Weather conditions have been generally warmer in the past weeks. Milk processing is going smoothly for many manufacturers as they are less pressured to find additional processing capacities. Milk supplies are adequate to meet current buyers’ needs and remain manageable. Class I demand is steady. Overall, the market tone is steady.
In New Mexico, milk yield has increased. The state is currently transitioning to the summer. Weather conditions are conforming with seasonal norms and are not a factor. The minor equipment issues some plants were facing last week have been taken care of, so they are back to running at normal schedules. Milk holdovers are a little high, but are expected to decrease before the end of the week. Class I, II and III intakes are all up this week.
Pacific Northwest milk production is following expected seasonal patterns with no significant disruptions to output or distribution. Manufacturers report intakes are in good balance with processing needs and bottling demand is steady.
Milk production in the mountain states of Idaho, Utah and Colorado remains strong. Industry contacts report that in the southern part of the region, milk intakes are in good balance with very few handling issues.
In the Northern part of the region, milk receipts may be in good balance one day, but heavy the next. The limited processing capacity and strong production makes the region susceptible to having excess milk due to the occasional hiccup with individual processors.
Western condensed skim output is higher and clearing mostly to nonfat dry milk. Supplies are abundant. Western cream inventories are unchanged from a week ago. Cream demand for higher Class utilization is steady. Therefore, cream continues to find its way to the churns. Cream multiples for all Classes are 1.04 to 1.27.
According to the DMN National Retail Report-Dairy for the week of April 27-May 3, the national weighted average advertised price for one gallon of milk is $2.14, down $0.28 from last week, and down $0.22 from a year ago. This week, there were no advertised prices reported in the Southwest. The weighted average regional price in the Northwest is $1.39.
According to the California Department of Food and Agriculture, the April 4a price (butter/powder) in California is $13.29, up $0.28 from the previous month, but $0.44 lower from a year ago. This compares to the Federal Order Class IV price of $13.48 for April. The April 4b price (cheese) is $14.27, up $0.31 from the previous month, but $0.03 lower from a year ago. This compares to the Federal Order Class III price for April at $14.47.
According to California Department of Food and Agriculture, March 2018 Class 1 sales in California totaled 53.2 million gallons, up 12.7 percent from last month, but down 2.0 percent from the previous year. From January through March 2018, Class 1 sales totaled 153.2 million gallons, down 3.0 percent from the comparable period in 2017.