Cows feeding at bunk.
July 23, 2018

Dairy Cow Slaughter Running 2% Ahead of Last Year

 |  By: Jim Dickrell

At first glance, it appears that farmers had slowed the rate of culling dairy cows—at least from June to May. In May they sent 245,100 cows to slaughter; in June, 237,5000. But the gross numbers can be a bit deceiving because there was one more working day this June.


When adjusted for kill days, the rate of livestock slaughter of dairy cows was up 1.5 % in June even though the total monthly kill was down about 7,600 cows. Cow kill through federally inspected plants was also up about 5.1% over June 2017, and is running 2% ahead of last 2017 on a year-to-date basis.


USDA estimates the total number of dairy cows was unchanged in June, with an estimated 9.404 million cows.


As we reported last week, U.S. milk production was up 1.2% from a year ago (up 1.3% in the 23 major dairy states). That increase was the result of more milk per cow.


You can view the entire livestock slaughter report here.


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