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February Milk Production Report n USA: Mixed Results Reflect Industry Challenges

USA 01.04.2024
Source: The DairyNews
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The latest February Milk Production Report in the USA presents a mixed picture, showcasing both increases and declines compared to previous years. With 28 days in February, the report's figures diverge from historical trends, particularly when accounting for leap years.
February Milk Production Report n USA: Mixed Results Reflect Industry Challenges
While overall February milk production increased by 2.4% compared to the non-leap year in 2023, the per-day production saw a modest decline of 1.1%. The total number of milk cows reached 9.3 million head, indicating a slight uptick of 10,000 from January 2024, yet marking a notable decrease of 89,000 compared to the previous year.

Some states experienced significant declines in milk production, with New Mexico leading the downturn, witnessing a loss of 97 million lbs. of milk alongside a reduction of 42,000 cows. Additional states reporting declines included Texas, Idaho, Oregon, and Minnesota, each facing various challenges impacting their dairy sectors.

However, amidst the broader decline, certain states demonstrated resilience and growth. South Dakota emerged as a standout performer, showing a year-over-year increase of 40 million lbs. of milk and adding 21,000 cows to its dairy herds. Florida, Wisconsin, and California also contributed to the positive trend, albeit to varying degrees.

Industry experts, including Phil Plourd, president of Ever.Ag Insight, note the lack of significant surprises in the report. Plourd highlights ongoing challenges within the dairy sector, citing reduced cow numbers, scarcity of heifers, and challenging economic conditions across regions.

Echoing similar sentiments, Dan Basse, an economist with AgResource Company, emphasizes the persistent tightness in cow numbers, driven in part by favorable cull and beef prices. Basse underscores the enduring impact of these market dynamics on heifer replacement rates, projecting continued constraints on dairy herd expansion in the foreseeable future.





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