7.4 billion lbs. member milk
4.3 million lbs. per producer
9.3 billion lbs. member milk
5.7 million lbs. per producer
Fewer farms, more milk
The 2012 survey shows that there has been no slowing of the trend toward fewer farmers producing more milk.
In 2012, there were 41,999 co-op member-producers who marketed milk in the United States, 15% (7,676) fewer than five years earlier. The greatest declines were in the East North Central region (2,932 fewer member-producers), followed by West North Central region (1,995 fewer) and North Atlantic region (1,385 fewer).
The two North Central regions and the North Atlantic region together accounted for 86% of all member‐producers, but had only 53% of cooperative milk volume. The South Central region had the fewest cooperative producers, being home to 1,629 members — a decline of 30% from 2007.
With the exception of the South Central, milk volume marketed by cooperative members in all regions was greater than five years earlier. The largest increase, up 5.2 billion lbs., was in the East North Central region, followed by the North Atlantic (1.7 billion lbs. increase) and the Western region (1.3 billion lbs. increase). The Western region remained the top source of cooperative milk, even though the pace of expansion there slowed down. Cooperatives in this region marketed 59.4 billion lbs. of member milk — 37% of total cooperative milk, compared to 38% five years ago.
The East North Central region accounted for 27% of total cooperative milk, an increase of two points from 2007. The North Atlantic and West North Central regions, respectively, supplied 14 and 13% of the milk marketed by cooperative members.
Milk deliveries per member-producer were up in all regions during the five-year period. Nationally, it increased 25%, from 3.07 million lbs. to 3.84 million lbs.. Per-member delivery was highest in the Western region, at 23.93 million lbs.. Percentage-wise, this is a 13% increase from 2007. Increases in other regions ranged from 22% to 35%.
There were three regions in which cooperative regional share of milk decreased: South Central, Western and South Atlantic. The declines, respectively, were from 83% to 71%, from 76% to 72%, and from 94% to 92%.
Slightly less dominant share of milk
As in 2007, four cooperatives each handled more than 6 billion lbs. of member milk in 2012. These four co-ops accounted for 47.8% of cooperative milk volume in 2012, 1.4 points lower share than reported for 2007 (see Table 2).
|Table 2. Number of dairy co-ops, by annual milk volume, 2007 & 2012|
|Cooperative milk volume||2007||2012|
|More than 6 billion lbs.||4||4|
|3 to 6 billon lbs.||8||10|
|2 to 3 billon lbs.||5||3|
|1 to 2 billion lbs.||11||9|
|0.5 to 1 billion lbs.||8||11|
|100 to 500 million lbs.||32||27|
|Less than 100 million lbs.||87||68|