U.S. cheese surplus sets record

01.31.19

The average American consumed nearly 37 pounds of cheese in 2017, but it wasn’t enough to put a dent in the country’s 1.4 billion-pound cheese surplus, reports NPR.

Years of high milk production and declining consumer preference for processed cheese products have contributed to the cheese surplus, the largest in U.S. history.

“People are turning away from processed cheese,” said Andrew Novakovic, professor of agricultural economics at Cornell University. “We're seeing increased sales of more exotic, specialty, European-style cheeses. Some of those are made in the U.S., a lot of them aren't."

The surplus of American-made cheese and milk is pushing prices down, falling short of the break-even price of dairy farmers. Some analysts have expressed concern that U.S. trade tensions with China and Mexico could also negatively impact the dairy industry, although the impact of retaliatory tariffs on domestic dairy products has been relatively small. Source: NPR


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