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The State of Dairy in 2019

Progressive Dairyman Editor Dave Natzke Published on 11 March 2019
State of the Dairy 2019

Entering a fifth year of lower milk prices, never have so many diverse regional voices been in such harmony around the economic condition of U.S. dairy farmers – at least in my lifetime.

As you’ll read in Progressive Dairyman’s 2019 “State of Dairy” report (see links below), the melodies may differ slightly, with accents on some local issues, but the lyrics grow remarkably similar to form the refrain.



In composing this year’s report, I reached out – through email, telephone and in person – to dozens of people across a wide range of roles in the dairy industry. Admittedly, many were lenders and organization leaders who have a broad pulse of large groups of producers and others in the dairy supply chain.

I wasn’t able to touch down in every state, but I was able to collect comments from many. Regardless of geography, concerns over markets, labor, regulations, trade policies and exports, processing capacity, changing consumer demands and imitation products all gained volume when combined with the discord of an unfavorable cost-income environment.

As in most songs, there are positives, to be sure. Dairy has some of the most positive people anywhere. You might just have to listen a little closer to hear them this year.  end mark

Northwest: Economic toll adding up

Southwest: Where the giants roam


Midwest: Moving toward equilibrium?

Norhteast: Resiliency is tested

Southeast: Weathering the storm

Dave Natzke
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