Growth in milk production slowed in January, but output still tops year-ago levels.

According to the USDA’s “Milk Production” report released Feb. 16, the 23-state milk supply was 14.2 billion pounds in January. That’s an increase of 1.4 percent versus a year ago. However, it could be the first inkling of a slowdown. Milk output has seen growth at the rate of 2 percent or more since September 2006.

The chart below shows total milk production in each of the top 23 dairy states during January versus a year ago.

The 23-state cow herd saw a year-over-year gain of 81,000 head, or 1 percent, in January. That increase puts the 23-state cow herd at 8.28 million head, which also is 3,000 head more than December 2006.

Milk production per cow in the top 23 states averaged 1,719 pounds in January, or about 55 pounds per cow per day. Monthly output per cow is up almost 0.5 percent, or 8 pounds, versus January 2006.  

The report included monthly, quarterly and annual revisions by state and United States for 2005 and 2006 milk production. It also reports the number of licensed dairy herds in the U.S. in 2006. That number has decreased from 64,540 herds in 2005 to 61,990 herds in 2006, a loss of 2,550 herds.

Meanwhile, U.S. milk production has increased 16 percent since 1997. During that same time, the U.S. saw an 18-percent increase in milk per cow and a 2-percent decrease in cow numbers.

To access the entire report, go to: http://usda.mannlib.cornell.edu/usda/current/MilkProd/MilkProd-02-16-2007.pdf

January milk production (Top 23 dairy states)

 

2006

2007

% change

 

(million

pounds)

 

Calif.

3,241

3,367

   3.9

Wis.

1,965

2,017

   2.6

N.Y.

1,032

1,011

-2.0

Idaho

866

917

5.9

Pa.

919

900

-2.1

Minn.

714

739

3.5

Mich.

593

626

5.6

Texas

600

618

3.0

N.M.

631

605

-4.1

Wash.

460

445

-3.3

Ohio

407

418

2.7

Iowa

350

361

3.1

Ariz.

350

349

-0.3

Ind.

277

284

2.5

Vt.

226

218

-3.5

Colo.

205

212

3.4

Fla.

199

189

-5.0

Kan.

199

186

-6.5

Ore.

187

180

-3.7

Ill.

170

169

-0.6

Va.

156

155

-0.6

Mo.

164

150

-8.5

Ky.

116

112

-3.4

USDA