The U.S. Dairy Exporter Blog: Market Analysis, Research & News
  • U.S. Dairy Exports Move Into Positive Territory

    By Alan Levitt October 6, 2016

    Record sales of milk powder to Mexico and dry whey to China lead the way.

    U.S. dairy exports topped $402 million in August, up 3 percent from last August, and the first year-over-year increase in more than two years. On a volume basis, exporters shipped 172,764 tons of milk powders, cheese, butterfat, whey and lactose during the month, 23 percent more than the prior year, and the most since May 2015.

    Sales to Mexico were $119.5 million, a 10-month high, and up 31 percent from last year. Exports of milk powder to Mexico were a record high 32,883 tons, up 80 percent from last year.


    Exports of whey products to China were more than double year-ago levels, and accounted for 45 percent of total U.S. whey shipments. Dry whey volume was the most since May 2015, led by record sales to China (9,308 tons). Exports of whey protein concentrate to China remain strong as well; in the June-August period, shipments were up 38 percent year-over-year.

    Cheese exports also have moved into positive territory. August volume was 22,710 tons, up fractionally from last August, marking the first year-over-year gain (albeit very small) since September 2014. Shipments to top three markets Mexico, Japan and South Korea were down 15 percent in August, but this was offset by an increase of 20 percent to all other destinations, led by the Middle East/North Africa region, Central America and Southeast Asia.


    On a total milk solids basis, U.S. exports were equivalent to 16.0 percent of U.S. milk production in August, the highest since April 2015.

    Click here to see USDEC’s monthly trade data summary, which has additional analysis of export trade trends.

    To use interactive charts with current and historical trade data, see's page on U.S. export data.

    To download a printable pdf summary of the August trade data, click here. 

    Alan Levitt is vice president of communications and market analysis at the U.S. Dairy Export Council.

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    The U.S. Dairy Export Council fosters collaborative industry partnerships with processors, trading companies and others to enhance global demand for U.S. dairy products and ingredients. USDEC is primarily supported by Dairy Management Inc. through the dairy farmer checkoff. How to republish this post.  

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