Fluid Milk and Cream — Western U.S.

March 14

California milk volumes produced are within the expected range. The plant that was closed for a mechanical breakdown last week reopened and is running well.

Milk production is somewhat up, and supplies are heavy. However, processing facilities are running full schedules, ensuring an efficient processing of all the milk available to them. Milk sales to Class I producers are flat.

Arizona farm milk is following seasonal trends. Even though weather outcomes have recently impacted milk yield, milk supplies remain heavy and available for all manufacturing needs. Processors are not as busy as last year because milk volumes so far are a bit lower this year. Class I intakes are at the same levels as the previous week.

In New Mexico farm milk offerings are higher than total orders because a planned downtime at a large Class III processing plant caused the plant managers to significantly decrease their intakes. Although other manufacturing facilities were able to take on a few extra loads to help with milk clearing, holdovers are higher than usual. Fortunately, milk production is a bit down this week. Bottled milk and Class II demands have both declined.

Pacific Northwest milk production is strong. Regional milk handlers say they had expected a dip in production, but that has never materialized. Milk shipments have returned to normal following the disruptions caused by winter storms three weeks ago.

Bottlers are adjusting schedules for reduced school milk orders as educational institutions cycle through the spring break season. Manufacturers are getting plenty of milk for their processing needs.

Milk production in the mountain states of Idaho, Utah and Colorado is level to higher. Slightly stronger sales into Class III, II and I processors have helped limit the number of loads getting pushed into surrounding states. Industry contacts report that a new facility has begun processing some initial volumes of condensed skim. Area dairy contacts hope this will help provide additional balancing capacity in the months to come.

Condensed skim supplies are steady and sales are unchanged from previous weeks. Condensed skim drying is active across the West as milk production is strong.

Cream is generally in good supply throughout the West. Butter churning remains active. Some ice cream producers have started to review their cream needs as they expect tighter cream availability in the summer. Multipliers for all Classes run 1.00 to 1.17.

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