January Milk Production Up 1.8%
January milk production climbed 1.8%, the United States Department of Agriculture reported this afternoon. Cow numbers were up 46,000 head over a year ago, and up 5,000 from December. The total number of cows now on U.S. farms is 9.405 million.
For the first time in months, California reported a bump in milk production, up 2.2%. This came on the strength of more milk per cow, up 2.4 lb/cow per day in January. Cow numbers in California continue to decline, however, down 16,000 head from a year ago.
The biggest percentage jump in milk production came in Colorado, with milk up 10.4% and cow numbers up 12,000 head (7.7%). The next biggest jumps came in Utah, up 8%; in Texas, up 5.8%, and New Mexico, up 5%.
Wisconsin saw milk production climb just 0.4%, with cow numbers actually dipping an estimated 5,000 head. New York was down 3.3% in milk production and Idaho was up 2.1%.
The January report provides a summary of all of 2017. For example, it shows cow number at a 10-year high, averaging 9.392 million head. Milk per cow set another record at 22,941 lb, up 12.5% over the past decade. Total milk production reached 215.5 billion lb, up 1.4% from last year, and up 13.4% over the last decade.