2023 was a “roller coaster” for the dairy industry, but 2024 could be different, experts say

2023 was a roller coaster for many in agriculture, especially the dairy industry.

Ag Tech Solutions group EverAg reflects on the up and down nature.

“Looking back on it, I never in a million years would’ve guessed we would have seen the $14.00 class 3 that we did in that June-July period and then to follow it up with $19.00 just a couple months later and then right back down and where we’re at, you’re looking at you know $15.30-ish class 3 at the moment for January,” said Zach Bowers.

As far as the world market, Bowers says the U.S. has not competed well price-wise, but that could change in 2024.

“Right now we’re the cheapest in the world on the cheese front at, you know, $1.45 ish spot price. As you know New Zealand is closer to $1.90. Europe is also in that $1.80 to $1.90 price as well. So we should be the first stop for exports. The question is if and when that happens, right? I mean we continue to see the Chinese economy downturn, continue to see their participation on the New Zealand GDT auction. You know this last auction this Tuesday was actually their participation was down 53% year over. Here, eventually, they will have to come step back into the market. Doesn’t look like it’s right now and it doesn’t look like it’s going to be anytime soon, right?”

For now, Bowers says another source of revenue for dairy farmers can be found in the dairy heifer market.

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