Livestock Marketing Information Center

Current Situation and Analysis
Last Updated: 3/13/2017
DAIRY MARKET TRENDS OF LATE 2016 CONTINUE INTO 2017

     Dairy markets of 2016 will be remembered for a reversal of economic conditions from the first half of the year to the second half. Nationally, the “All Milk” price at the farm reported by USDA-National Agriculture Statistics Service bottomed out at $14.50 per hundredweight in May 2016 and pushed higher throughout the balance of the year to finish at December at $18.80. The January 2017 price tacked on another dime, to $18.90, a 17% increase from twelve months earlier.


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JANUARY MEAT AND POULTRY TRADE UPDATE

    The recent trends of year-over-year increases in exports and smaller imports started last year continued in January, as expected. The major driver has been very competitive prices relative to other exporting countries combined with improving economic conditions in many Asian countries. USDA’s Economic Research Service published their carcass weight equivalent meat and poultry trade data for January (published March 9th). Those data are calculated from the official monthly product weight data as compiled by USDA’s Foreign Agriculture Service using customs data.


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CULL COW PRICES SEASONALLY HIGHER

     Normally, cull cow (animals removed from the breeding herd and harvested) prices are highly seasonal, but that was not the case for much of the last two years. Normally, cull cow prices are lowest in the fall when most U.S. cow-calf operations are evaluating their breeding animals and culling. Then, into the new calendar year, prices increase significantly. For example, on average from November until March during the 10-year period from 2005 through 2014 cull cow prices in the Southern Plains increased by about 18%.


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