Favorable outlook indicators for the potential for dairy profitability in 2014 are likely fueling a steady increase in Holstein springer prices nationwide. The greatest increase in the past month was in Texas, where top-quality springers increased by as much as $400 per head. Prices also are strong in California, which passed the $2,000 per head mark for top-end springers this month. Compared to year-ago levels, top-quality springers are bringing from $100 to $700 per head more, averaging about $400 per head higher than February 2013 values.

Holstein heifer calves were mixed compared to last month, but approximately $50 per head higher than last year.

Springing heifers
Heifer calves
 Location (sale date)
Supreme/top grade
Approved/medium grade
90-120 pounds
Turlock, Calif. (11/22/13)
Stratford, Wis. (12/4/13)
Sulphur Springs, Texas (11/7/13)
New Holland, Pa. (12/4/13)