Seth Hoyt
Author of The Hoyt Report, providing hay market analysis and insight

Just when optimism was starting to return to the dairy industry in the western U.S. from higher forecasted milk prices, USDA’s Cold Storage report early last week showed more cheese and butter inventories than what was expected. As a result, cash cheese and Class III milk futures markets dropped significantly with barrel cheese falling 18.5 cents and block cheese dropping 12.5 cents last week. Some dairies in the Tulare area of California that were beginning to purchase more alfalfa hay turned cautious by late last week and wanted to see where milk prices were heading before additional purchases. The impact on alfalfa hay demand from the falling cheese and Class III milk futures markets was seen more in central California as dairies in Idaho and Washington have been pretty quiet in buying alfalfa hay.