Gains in milk futures have spurred renewed interest in the dairy market. While price increases have been temporary, they help to keep overall attitudes bearish. Milk production is behind year-ago levels but has finished relatively similar to near-record amounts in 2022. Milk supplies have been consistently high, tempering what could be a more optimistic market with shrinking herd sizes.

Dairy cattle slaughter in December totaled 224,700, down over 41,000 head from December 2022, making it the lowest slaughter since May 2021. As of January 1, it is estimated 9.358 milk cows are in the U.S.

Read more about the dairy market and milk prices here.