Behold the Market Share of Cheese

March 02 2005 - 2:32 PM

Cheese_1From Brownfield Just when it looked like the cash cheese price on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) was trending lower, it turned around. During the first two weeks of February, the CME price for blocks and barrels declined nearly thirty cents. On February 15th, barrels were $1.38, blocks $1.42. During the last two weeks of February those same prices increased 21.25 and 23.25 cents, taking barrels to $1.5925 and blocks to $1.6525 on the last day of the month.

Why the turn-around? While prices were low, demand improved significantly, which helped push prices higher. Also, cheese output during February was relatively low due to the cheese and Class III milk price relationship. Processors were still paying high January prices for milk to make lower-priced February cheese. In the Northeast, cheese factories reduced production to two or three days per week at some plants, others continued to operate daily, but did not take any extra milk.

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