Fluid Milk and Cream — Western U.S.
Farm milk outputs are trending steady to slightly up this week in California. Raw milk volumes are ample for most dairy processing needs. Milk sales into Class I are inching up due to an increase in seasonal eggnog production. Shipments to Class II are described as flat.
Class III milk deliveries remain robust, driven by strong cheese purchases from the government and fast food outlets.
In Arizona, farm milk production is increasing, but slowly. Milk/cream volumes are reported as tight. Some processors are bringing in raw milk from nearby states to meet their needs, while a few processing plants has been down for repairs and maintenance.
In New Mexico, the weather has calmed down after last week’s rains. Several dairy farms are operating on muddy conditions, in some cases, lowering milk production and milk quality. Nevertheless, milk intakes are more than enough to meet most processing needs, inside and outside the state. No major issues have been reported on milk hauling. Shipments into Class I are higher inside and outside the western region. Sales into Class III are also on the rise.
Milk output is solid in the Pacific Northwest. Farmers and handlers are keeping intakes in check with production base programs. Manufacturers have plenty of milk on hand to keep facilities running near full capacity. Downtime is limited, but processors can make required maintenance and repairs as needed. Bottling demand is steady. Cream supplies are readily available.
Milk production in the mountain states of Idaho, Utah, and Colorado, is still heavy. Across the Pacific Northwest and mountain states, high freight costs are keeping milk from moving very far from its source. There is more than enough milk to keep processing facilities full.
Discounted spot loads of milk are common in Idaho.
Western ice cream makers continue pulling strong on condensed skim milk volumes. Some contacts say that condensed skim milk intakes moving into dryers have been declining this week. In some balancing plants, dryers are not running at full capacity due to the lower volume moving in.
Throughout the West, the availability of cream for all Classes varies from readily available to somewhat limited. Cream volumes continue clearing into butter processing and are progressively absorbed by Class II processors. Some butter makers have picked up some extra loads of cream, inside and outside the region. Cream multiples remained steady this week.