Record U.S. dairy exports in 2021

The industry’s decades of work led to a record year for U.S. dairy exports after the U.S. Department of Agriculture announced record sales of $7.75 billion in 2021, accounting for over 17% of U.S. milk production. 

“The record demand for U.S. milk overseas in 2021 is a testament to the hard work and dedication of U.S. dairy farmers and the entire industry to making sure our high-quality, nutritious products feed the world as well as Americans,” said Jim Mulhern, president and CEO of the National Milk Producers Federation. “As we’ve said many times, exports represent the next frontier for U.S. dairy — it’s gratifying to see decades of effort bear fruit and only makes us more excited about the future successes ahead.”

Exports may have reached even higher levels had U.S. exporters not been battered by supply chain challenges that drove up costs and complexity of delivering dairy products to foreign customers. The U.S. dairy industry will need proactive trade policies that remove barriers to trade and ensure that U.S. dairy farmers and manufacturers are equipped to compete on a level playing field, the organizations added. 

“Outstanding results like last year’s record-setting $7.75 billion in U.S. dairy exports don’t happen overnight. They’re the result of a lot of hard work by our industry to build demand for U.S. dairy products around the world and harness the opportunities that past trade deals — from U.S. free trade agreements to the World Trade Organization’s Uruguay Round — have made available,” said Krysta Harden, president and CEO of the U.S. Dairy Export Council. “We look forward to continuing to build on this success further and to ensure we have the right trade and export supply chain policy tools to support that growth.”

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