The milk-feed price ratio reversed course in March, advancing 0.1 points to 2.41, according to the USDA’s announcement of feed-price ratios on March 29. One year ago the ratio was 2.70.
The all-milk price used to calculate the March ratio increased 60 cents to $15.50. One year ago, the all-milk price was $12.60.
The corn price used to calculate the March ratio lost eight cents, which put it at $3.36 per bushel. Soybeans declined a mere two cents to $6.85 per bushel. One year ago, the prices for corn and soybeans were $2.06 and $5.57, respectively. Baled alfalfa hay increased $3 to $120 per ton. That’s up $20 versus a year ago.
The USDA issued a modest revision to the February milk-feed ratio, decreasing it from 2.32 to 2.31. It did just the opposite with feed prices, increasing corn from $3.32 to $3.44 and soybeans from $6.83 to $6.87. The February all-milk price also increased, from $14.70 to $14.90.
The milk-feed ratio represents the pounds of 16-percent mixed dairy feed equal in value to 1 pound of whole milk. Therefore, with a 2.41 ratio in March, a dairy producer could buy 2.41 pounds of feed for every 1 pound of milk sold.
Whenever the ratio meets or exceeds 3.0, it is considered profitable to buy feed and produce milk.