U.S. dairy exports set a new record high in March on a total volume basis surpassing the previous record high set in March 2014. Exports of whey protein concentrate and lactose each hit all-time highs. Suppliers shipped 204,453 tons of milk powder, cheese, butterfat, whey, and lactose during the month, up 26 percent from March 2017. U.S. exports were valued at $510 million, 8 percent greater than in March 2017 and the highest total value since April 2015.
Ingredient sales drove much of the gains. Shipments of nonfat dry milk/skim milk powder (NDM/SMP) to Southeast Asia were nearly double the prior-year level and sales to Mexico were the second-most ever. Shipments of lactose to China increased by 57 percent during the month and were at a record high.
FC Stone dairy broker Dave Kurzawski tells Lee Mielke that on a total milk solids basis, exports were equivalent to 17.3 percent of U.S. milk production.