Dairy income in 2020 down for the year

Dairy farmers saw a slight decline in prices while adding cows in 2020.

The USDA reports 2020 milk production increased 2.2 percent to 223 billion pounds, while marketings totaled $40.5 billion.  Farmers earned an average of $18.25 per hundredweight during the year, down slightly more than two percent from 2019. 

Farmers in Florida, Oregon, Oklahoma, and South Dakota saw that highest milk price, all above $20 per hundredweight, while New Mexico, Michigan, and Kansas saw the lowest average price.

Chief economist Peter Vitaliano tells Brownfield milk prices this year are hitting their low point now and are expected to increase as much as $3 per hundred weight before 2022.

“Corn prices are now heading back up again and so that’s going to be a bit of a wild card in terms of what that means for the margin,” he says.

The national herd size last year increased by 51,000 head to nearly 9.4 million.  Average production per cow increased 382 pounds from 2019 to nearly 24,000 pounds.

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