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August delivers expected milk reduction


By CAROL RYAN DUMAS



Capital Press



Industry analysts were caught off guard last month when USDA reported a 0.8 percent increase in milk production. They had expected a drop in production, considering the drought, heat and feed costs.



The effects of those factors seem to have showed up in the agency's August report, with milk production in the 23 major producing states down 0.2 percent from August 2011 and down 0.5 percent from July.



The drop ended a 30-month run of year-over-year increases in milk production.



In addition, July's milk production was revised down another 24 million pounds, settling at a 0.7 percent year-over-year increase.



The number of milk cows was up 32,000 head from August 2011, but the average milk production per cow was down 10 pounds.



Milk production in California was down 0.5 percent although the number of cows was up 10,000 head.



Idaho's production was down 0.2 percent and cow numbers declined by 9,000 head. Washington's production was down 3.3 percent, with cow numbers down 4,000 head. Oregon's production was down 0.5 and cows held steady at 123,000 head.



Arizona, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Texas also posted decreases in milk production.






August milk production - 23 major states



Milk production



2012 2011 %change



million pounds



Calif. 3,299 3,502 -5.8



Idaho 1,179 1,181 -0.2



Ore. 215 216 -0.5



Wash. 523 541 -3.3



U.S. 15,313 15,342 -0.2






Milk cows



2012 2011



1,000 head



Calif. 1,783 1,773



Idaho 578 582



Ore. 123 123



Wash. 261 265



U.S. 8,500 8,459






Milk per cow



2012 2011



pounds



Calif. 1,850 1,975



Idaho 1,181 2,040



Ore. 1,750 1,760



Wash. 2,005 2,040



U.S. 1,803 1,813



SOURCE: USDA-NASS








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