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May 3, 2018

USDEC Targeting Both Volume and Value Dairy Exports

 |  By: Jim Dickrell

The U.S. Dairy Export Council (USDEC) has released a 3-page explanation of its “The Next 5%” initiative, launched at World Dairy Expo last year.


In essence, USDEC is trying to increase U.S. dairy exports from the current level of 15% of total production to 20% in the next five years. “While the goal is expressed in terms of volume, it’s more than a volume target. That’s because the U.S. dairy industry cannot expand volume as needed without heightening the focus on meeting the evolving demands of overseas customers and consumers with innovative, high-value products,” says Mark O'Keefe, USDEC vice president of editorial services


Without increased sales, U.S. milk prices will continue to stagnate and be wholly dependent on global dairy prices. By increasing both volume and value, milk prices should strengthen and offer growth opportunities to both farmers and processors. While U.S. domestic demand is growing, it has not absorbed all the new milk production that has come on stream in the past 15 years. O’Keefe notes that nearly half of the “new” milk produced in this country has gone to exports since 2003.


USDEC projects global dairy trade will grow by some 2.3 million metric tons over the next three to five years, which creates opportunities for U.S. dairy products. But these products must be tailored to fit what global consumers actually want. So “The Next 5%” is coordinated approach to both grow sales and provide processors with the market intelligence on what new dairy products are in demand.


“Thus, The Next 5% is a dual-track goal to deliver volume expansion concurrently while lifting the value of the products U.S. Dairy is selling,” says Tom Vilsack, USDEC president and CEO.


You can read the 3-page explanation of “The Next 5%” here.