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  October 2016 Issue No. 447

Inside this months issue …

Our two stories of the month:
U.S. Milk Flow Trailed Demand for Last 18 Months (and) Wisconsin Gov’t Bankrolling Water Polluters’ Public Relations Efforts: 
Click Here.

Grain Harvest Unsettled in Upper Midwest (p. 1):   
     Since mid-August, wet conditions have prevailed in the Upper Midwest.  But starting around September 11-12, the deluges really started.  Quality concerns about the region’s 2016 grain crop abound., due to moisture-induced molds.  Timely harvesting of soybeans and corn is threatened by wet field conditions.  The U.S. grain trade is stalled, waiting for better signals about the volume and quality of the Upper Midwest’s grain crop.

U.S. Milk Flow Trailed Demand for Last 18 Months (p. 1):
   One of our “Stories of the Month.”  See link above.

USDA Economist: Future U.S. Per Capita Dairy Consumption “Flat” (p. 2): 
   What a dipstick.  At a World Dairy Expo seminar on October 6, Sharon Sydow (a top-tier USDA economist) stated that her agency views future domestic dairy consumption growth as “flat.”

European Union Dairy Producers Fully Contract Q4 Milk Production (p. 2):
    For 2016’s fourth quarter, the European Union is paying contracting dairy producers to make less milk.  Farmers will be paid on the basis of how much milk output they reduce (compared to 2015’s Q4).

Sept. ’16 Manufacturing Class Milk Prices All Decline (p. 2):
   USDA reported that Class III milk for September was $16.39 (down $.52/cwt.) and Class IV milk was at $14.25/cwt. (down $.40) cwt.

10/1/16:  Dean Foods Boosts Consumers’ Fluid Milk Prices (p. 3):
   Talk about larceny!  On October 1, Dean Foods – the nation’s biggest fluid milk processor – dramatically boosted prices for its branded beverage milk products.  Gallon prices went up 16 cents.  Half-gallons and quarts went up 13 cents.  What’s the concern?  In October, federal milk order prices went up about one-third of a cent per gallon!

Walmart Plant Site at Fort Wayne, IN Way Behind Schedule (p. 3):
Forget about Walmart’s Fort Wayne, Indiana milk plant coming on line in 2017’s fourth quarter.  Basically, construction hasn’t started.  Curiosity festers in the dairy about when that plant will be at full production.

Monsanto + Bayer: Latest Mega-Merger to Hit Ag Sector (p. 4):
  Writer Jan Shepel fills in details of the Monsanto/Bayer corporate marriage, and covers the wider span of agribusiness mergers taking place in 2016.

Honest Mistake??? — DFA Short-Weights Some August Milk Checks in NY (p. 4):
  Several neighbors in New York found that their settlement checks for August milk from Dairy Farmers of America were thousands of pounds of milk short, compared to their bulk tank weight tickets.  Honest mistake?  Or more of the same from the Milk Mafia?

Huge, Negative PPDs Anger Michigan Milk Co-op Members (p. 5):
    To cover operating losses and inefficiencies, Michigan Milk Producers has been swiping huge amounts of milk income through so-called, “Producer Price Differentials.”  The Milkweed calculates MMPA’s PPD deductions (relative to the prevailing Order 33 PPDs) for June-August 2016 averaged $2.30/cwt.  Ouch.

WI Gov’t Bankrolling Water Polluters’ Public Relations Efforts (p. 6-7):
    This story about dirty water politics in northeastern Wisconsin.  This story is a “Story of the Month.”  See link above.

How to Fix the Dairy Margin Protection Program (p. 7):
    Jan Shepel visits the Vosbergs, who milk cows near South Wayne, Wisconsin.  They’ve found the Normande breed works very well for their mostly grazing-based dairy operation.

Roelli Cheese Earns Top American Cheese Society Award (p. 9):
   Master Cheese Maker Chris Roelli took home the blue ribbon from this past summer’s American Cheese Society convention.  Roelli’s prize-winning cheese is a unique product, called “Little Mountain.”  Writer Ken Rabas wrote this story.

“Big $ugar” Shamelessly Shifted Chronic Heart Disease Blame to Animal Fats (p. 10-11):  
     Writer Paris Reidhead digs deep into recent medical journal article that details how the nation’s sugar lobby “bought off” three Harvard researchers in the 1960s to issue medical studies shifting blame for heart disease away from sugar.

Interview with Leonard Vandenburg (Pacific Gold Milk Producers):
Writer Ed Zimmerman poses questions to Leonard Vandenburg, head of Pacific Gold Milk Producers.  Pacific Gold is marketing “differentiated” farm milk at premiums – organic, GMO-free, grass-fed and A2.  Very interesting!

Agri-Mark’s Dilemma: Paying Costs of Animal Welfare Lawsuit Settlement (p. 12):
   Pete Hardin picks on Agri-Mark, the major New England dairy cooperative, for its potential costs as a defendant in the recently-settled animal welfare lawsuit.  Agri-Mark, National Milk Producers, Dairy Farmers of America, Dairylea Co-op and Land O’Lakes were defendants that settled for $52 million.

U.S. Cheddar and Butter Prices Decline as World Markets Soar (p. 13):
While U.S. cash prices for Cheddar and butter nose-dive, world market prices are soaring.  Global milk production is struggling and China is back buying significantly.  But U.S. commodity prices are down.

Dairy Livestock: Milk & Cull Cows Take a Beating (p. 14):
    A lot of dairy cows are going to market and buyers’ interest is light. Many dairy cows sold at auction these days are going for about $100 over “kill price” … and “kill prices” are going down hard.

Castelli America Ushsers Out Empire Specialty Cheese (p. 14):
    Writer Nate Wilson closes out a long-running series about the misbegoton Empire Specialty Cheese, LLC.  An Italian firm – Castelli – has acquired the Empire plant at BLockville, in New York State’s westernmost tip.

Kraft’s Lowville, NY Expansion Behind Schedule (p. 14):
    The massive expansion of its Lowville, NY cheese plant is running about two months behind schedule in early October.  That expansion will add three million additional pounds of milk processing capacity … per day!

No way to sustain this vital industry … (p. 15):
    Pete Hardin details what’s wrong with this corrupt, crooked industry and what needs to be done to fix it.

Farmers Spanked for Posilac Use After Signing Affidavits with Cheese Plant (p. 16):
    Two Wisconsin dairy farmers were found violating their signed agreements not to inject their cows with Posilac – the controversial cow growth hormone.  Wisconsin’s agriculture department investigated.  The farmers lost their milk market, but were able to continue shipping milk elsewhere.

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