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Milk futures, cash dairy mostly lower

Class III milk futures at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange were mostly lower on spread trade and profit taking. April was unchanged at $15.24, May was down $.03 at $15.18, June was $.04 lower at $15.36, and July was down $.03 at $15.86.

Cash cheese blocks were unchanged at $1.475. Barrels were $.02 lower at $1.40. One load was sold at $1.40. The last uncovered offer was for one load, also at $1.40.

Butter was $.0075 higher at $2.07. Seven loads were sold, including one at $2.07. The last unfilled bid was on one load at $2.0625. The last uncovered offer was for one load at $2.075.

Nonfat dry milk was down $.0025 at $.8475. One load was sold at $.8475. The last unfilled bid was for two loads at $.8375. The last uncovered offer was on two loads at $.86.

For the week ending April 15th, the USDA reports cash butter averaged $2.13 per pound, up $.003 on the week. 40 pound blocks of cheddar came out at $1.50, $.033 higher. 500 pound blocks averaged $1.47, up $.023. Dry whey was pegged at $.529, down $.006. Nonfat dry milk averaged $.832, $.006 higher.

The USDA says the base Class I milk price for May was $15.20 per hundredweight, down $.85 from April, with the skim price at $7.14, $.61 lower.

According to HighGround Dairy, milk production in Germany for the week ending April 2nd was down 2.8% on the year, while milk production for the United Kingdom during the week ending April 1st was up 0.6% and production in France for the week ending April 9th was 1% lower. February’s total for the 26 European Union member states assessed for milk production was 1.2% lower than a year ago. HighGround says that during January, the Netherlands culled a 15-year high amount of cattle for that month, as producers continue to adjust to a phosphate reduction scheme that offers an incentive of €300 per cow slaughtered.

The USDA says the 2016 dairy cattle slaughter totaled 2.543 million head, or 9.6% of all cattle slaughtered, compared to 2.236 million in 2015, or 10.3% of that year’s kill.

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