Cheese down, but butter up

Daily Cash Trading on Thursday, May 1, 2014





















California April 4a/4b prices lower

California’s April 2014 Class 4a/4b milk prices were announced on Thursday, May 1.

The Class 4a butter-powder price declined for the first time in more than a year, to $23.31/cwt. The April price is down 6¢ from March, but $5.29 more than April 2013. The January-April 2014 average stands at $22.97/cwt., $5.23 more than the same period a year ago.

The Class 4b price is also lower than a month earlier, at $21.73/cwt. The April price is down 43¢ from March, but $4.81 more than April 2013. It is $2.58 below the comparable April federal order Class III price. The January-April 2014 average is $21.34/cwt., $5.54 more than the same period a year ago.

Federal order April 2014 Class II, III & IV prices were announced April 30.


Weekly dairy cow slaughter under federal inspection

Week ending April 19: 52,000 head, the lowest weekly total since the holiday-interrupted week of Jan. 4

Year-to-date (YTD) 2014: 926,600 head

YTD compared to same period 2013: -98,500 head

Highlights: For the week, 32% came from USDA Zone 5 (IL, IN, MI, MN, OH & WI); 26% came from USDA Zone 9 (AZ, CA, HI & NV).

Source: USDA Weekly Cow Slaughter Report


FCS East webinar to discuss ‘Dairy Farm’ financial report

Farm Credit East released information indicating dairy farmers’ net earnings rose by 18% in 2013. The information comes from Farm Credit’s 2013 Northeast Dairy Farm Summary report. Farm Credit East will host a webinar for dairy farmers and other interested parties on Monday, May 5, noon-1 p.m., to discuss the results of this year’s report.

The Dairy Farm Summary results show net earnings per cow for dairy farms participating in the study increased to $490/cow, up from $415 in 2012. Cash flow on dairy farms was sufficient to meet financial commitments, including operating expenses, scheduled debt payments, family living and income taxes, as well as to reinvest in the business. Average net worth increased to 73%.

The webinar will include an overview of this year’s report, with reaction and commentary from an expert panel. The webinar is free to participants. Visit for registration information.

Farm Credit East, in conjunction with Yankee Farm Credit, compiles the annual Northeast Dairy Farm Summary that looks at farms from New York, New England and New Jersey. The summary reviews all aspects of dairy financial information from participating dairy farm businesses. This year, 517 dairy farms participated.

For further highlights of the 2013 Northeast Dairy Farm Summary, or to purchase a copy, interested parties can visit


Idaho Producers Livestock Marketing Association

Dairy replacement sales results from Jerome, Idaho, on April 30:

Springers (top 150): $2170 with top of $2420

Fresh heifers: $1800-$2070

Short bred: $1020-$1400

Open heifers

   (500-600 lbs.): $129-$153/cwt.


New Holland Sales Stables

Dairy replacement sales results from New Holland, Pa. on April 30:

 Compared to last week, dairy cows sold mostly steady on a lower quality offering of fresh cows. Demand was good on light offerings. Not enough receipts last week for an accurate market trend on bred cows. Demand was very good. Heifers traded unevenly steady with a firm undertone compared to last week. Demand was good. Prices are for Holsteins on a per-head basis unless otherwise noted.


Fresh Cows

Supreme: 2400-2750

Approved: 2200-2400

Medium: 1800-1950


Springing cows (bred 7-9 months)

Supreme: 2000-2200

Approved: 1775-1900


Bred cows (bred 4-6 months)      

Supreme: 2100-2300

Approved: 1650-1900

Medium: 1375-1550

Common: 1150-1350


Short bred ceifers (bred 1-3 months)

Supreme: 1800-2150

Approved: 1650-1775

Medium: 1550


Springing heifers (bred 7-9 months)

Supreme: 2000-2300

Approved: 1775-1975

Medium: 1575-1725

Common: 1275-1475


Bred heifers (bred 4-6 months)      

Supreme: 1825 single lot

Approved: 1500-1700

Medium: 1325-1425

Common: 1050-1300


Short bred heifers (bred 1-3 months)

Supreme: 1600-1700

Aproved: 1450-1575

Medium: 1350-1375

Common: 1050-1225


Open Heifers

(300-600 lbs.)

Supreme: 975

Approved: 850-885


(600-900 lbs.)

Supreme: 1175-1200

Approved: 1025-1125


(900-1200 lbs.)

Approved: 1100-1310



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