Lee Mielke: Cheese output flat as prices sputter


The cash Cheddar blocks climbed to $1.7050 per pound following last Monday’s Labor Day holiday, highest CME price since Nov. 15, 2017, then lost 6 cents Wednesday, and regained 1 3/4-cents Friday to close the shortened week at $1.6625, down 3 1/4-cents but 2 cents above a year ago.

The barrels hit $1.64 last Tuesday and then plunged 8 1/4-cents Thursday and dropped 5 3/4-cents Friday, finishing at $1.50, down 14 1/2-cents on the week and 4 cents below a year ago.


Monday’s trading took the blocks up three-quarters, then they dropped 4 1/2-cents Tuesday, to $1.6250. The barrels ticked up 2 cents Monday only to fall 6 1/2-cents Tuesday, to $1.4550, the lowest price since Aug. 1, 2018, and 17 cents below the blocks.

Reports from Midwestern cheesemakers say demand remains steady to improving, according to Dairy Market News. Central Class III producers continue to deal with hauling costs and delays, particularly for loads heading east, which have “snowballed to a problematic point.” Cheese output remains steady to down a bit. Milk into the vat is harder to find during the busier school bottling season and prices ranged $1 to $2 over Class III.


Cheese output in the West remains active with several plants close to full capacity. Current demand is strong and exports into the Asian market increased, but some Latin American countries have slowed intakes. As trade negotiations between the U.S. and Mexico are showing a favorable tendency, industry participants hope to see a boost of cheese market activities.”

Butter closed last week at $2.23 per pound, up 1 1/2-cents but 22 3/4-cents below a year ago.

The Monday price was up 2 3/4-cents but gave back 3 1/4-cents Tuesday, falling to $2.2250.

Cream supplies into Central butter production Read More >

Link: http://www.capitalpress.com/Dairy/20180911/mielke-cheese-output-flat-as-prices-bounce