May 22, 2018

Butter and Cheese Inventories Continue to Climb

 |  By: Know Your Market

The USDA released their monthly cold storage report on Tuesday. For the month of April, butter and cheese inventories continued to climb. Total natural cheese on April 30th, 2018, was reported at 1.346 billion lbs., up 2% from March and 3% above year ago levels. Butter stocks totaled 307 million lbs. 12% above March levels and 5% ahead of last year. Total beef in freezers were higher as well. Beef stocks came in at 471 million lbs. outpacing April 2017 by 3% and March 2018 by 2%.


After beginning today’s trading session 8-10 cents higher, Class III milk futures failed to maintain those gains when spot cheese traded. The May contract added 2 cents, June fell 6 cents, and the second half ranged from even to 5 cents higher. January 2019 was down a penny and February closed 2 cents weaker.


Class IV markets had limited trade and change. CME spot product markets were highlighted by the butter market once again. Butter traded 1 and ½ cents higher to $2.45 per lb. The last time butter traded at $2.45 cents was September 21, 2017. Six trades, seven bids and seven offers came to the butter market on Tuesday. 


Cheddar blocks declined ¼ cent while barrels fell ½ cent. Grade A nonfat dry milk was unchanged at 85 and ½ cents and dry whey settled ¼ cent higher at 37 and ¼. 


Grains found follow through strength Tuesday following the positive announcement between China and the United States. Wheat led the field as it jumped 10-14 cents, soybeans were up 5 cents and corn traded as high at $4.25 per bw, just 4 and ½ cents from the December 2018 contract high at $4.29 ½.