Home > News > 4 Important States Leading the Dairy Herd Decline

The U.S. dairy herd has experienced three periods of herd liquidations since 2018. Since May to August 2023, dairy cow numbers have fallen by 54,000 head. This liquidation period stands contrary to the other two, as the decline occurred even as most of the top 24 dairy cow states maintained or grew numbers. Only four states have accounted for the larger decline over the last five months. These states include California, Kansas, New Mexico and Texas.

The numbers seem surprising as dairy producers across the country have weathered serious margin challenges and numerous economic factors that have added significant challenges for the industry. The Dairy Margin Coverage (DMC) program could be playing an important role. While margins are expected to remain tight and feed costs high, analysts continue to monitor how much longer most dairy-producing states can stave off liquidation.

Read more on the dairy market here.


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