February Cheese Exports Second Best Ever
Early 2019 saw strong cheese exports, totaling 32,515 tons in February, 16% more than a year ago, according to the U.S. Dairy Export Council (USDEC). The daily average sales made February the second best ever, behind March 2014.
Cheese exports to South Korea were the highest in nearly four years, up 71%. Top markets also saw significant gains, including Mexico (+9%), Japan (+18%), Australia (+8%), Southeast Asia (+41%) and Central America (+24%).
Other products sales grew as well, with fluid milk and cream up 30%, butterfat up 34% and whole milk powder up 64%.
Overall, shipments of milk powders, cheese, butterfat, whey products and lactose were up from the previous three months and marked the second highest February volume ever, according to USDEC. However, this was down 14% from the strong performance recorded in February 2018.
Total exports were up 3% over 2018, and measured an equivalent of 14.3% of U.S. milk production in February, the highest figure since October.