From pricing to the Capitol, Texas dairy’s outlook for the new year
By Darren Turley, executive director
The new year is here, and the milk prices are all aflutter. The board of trade continues to have significant swings in the Class 3 and Class 4 prices that change the price paid to dairy farmers. The announcement of another round of food box donations that include dairy has definitely improved the price projections. The butter stockpile for food service still weighs on the market, but the outlook for the new year’s prices is still positive.
The tiered pricing program will most likely not go into effect this month but will be coming as production continues to climb. This also will impact dairy farmers’ profitability this year as production over 90% of allotted production will be discounted significantly.
Speaking of climbing production, at the end of 2020 Texas milk production had increased almost 10% over the close of 2019. This increase is significant as it took place during the COVID-19 shutdown that impacted dairy orders by restaurants and other commercial customers. This increase has Texas very close to overtaking New York as the fourth largest dairy producing state in the U.S.
The new year has also brought some snowy days. Central Texas saw several inches of snow from two storms – more than I’ve seen in my lifetime in the area. Many of our state’s dairy areas have seen snow, but thankfully nothing like devastating storm Goliath from several years ago.
The 87th Texas legislative session has begun, and it will be conducted very differently as the pandemic continues to rage. Regardless of how it’s conducted, the Texas Association of Dairymen’s governmental relations team is on the ground in Austin, and we will be closely monitoring bills and hearings for issues of interest to our state’s dairy industry, just like we do every legislative session. For more on the start of session, and how it will look different this year, see the governmental relations team’s report in our January newsletter.
Everyone wants 2021 be a much better year that 2020, but we will have to wait and see how the year unfolds. Whatever the new year brings, the Texas Association of Dairymen will continue to fight to protect our dairy farmers, communities and industry.