U.S. Dairy Product Trade
The following presents a brief discussion of total dairy product imports and exports. The reader should be aware that a standard definition of total dairy trade is non-existent with the result that other analysts may use different definitions and come up with different totals.
Bureau of the Census export data for the first months of 2001 show that the pace of U.S. dairy product exports is running well ahead of 2000. For the first 10 months of 2001, the total value of dairy exports was $882 million compared to $784 million in the same period of 2000. Further processed items such as food preparations contributed most of the gain. For basic dairy products, cheese and condensed milk exports are significantly higher. The value of milk powder shipments, which are mainly a function of DEIP activity, were up.
Exports in the whey complex were down as larger exports of whey protein concentrate were more than offset by reduced dry whey exports. With no DEIP activity and several months of higher than normal domestic prices, exports of butter and butterfats are off sharply.
On a regional basis, the value of shipments to Mexico is running ahead of last year and, at least temporarily, has put that country in the top spot as the destination of US dairy exports.
For the January-October period, the pace of exports to Canada was down slightly from last year, when a significant increase occurred.
Exports to Japan, the number 3 market, are down slightly, though shipments to Asia overall are significantly higher. Growth is particularly strong for shipments to China, Korea, and the Philippines.
Data on dairy imports, also from the Bureau of the Census show the pace of imports during the first 10 months of 2001 running ahead of that of 2000, i.e., $1,348 million this year compared with $1,247 million last year.
For cheese, the largest imported product, both volume and value are running above last year. The largest increase is for American type cheese. The value of casein, the second leading import item was up even though the quantity imported was down over 10 percent. Imports of milk protein concentrate are off roughly 50 percent from last year’s record level.