Professional Dairy Producers of WI

Wisconsin Ag News Headlines
Wisconsin Lost Just 399 Dairy Herds in 2021
Wisconsin Ag Connection - 01/07/2022

Despite the continued effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and increased costs due to inflation, more Wisconsin dairy operations were able to ride out the storm and remain in business in 2021 compared to more recent years. According to the state's agriculture department, there were 6,533 herds milking during the first week of January. That's a drop of 399 from the same time a year earlier. In 2020, 360 farms went out of business, while 2019 saw a reduction of 818 licensed herds; and more than 500 in both 2018 and 2017.

Clark County continues to hold the highest number of herds in the state with 696, followed by Marathon County with 409.

Milwaukee County registered just one herd as of January 1, with Forest, Florence and Oneida Counties each losing their remaining dairy farms in recent years.

However, the reduction in total farms does not mean there's less cows or a loss of production. That's because the state's remaining dairy operations are still milking over 1.28 million head of cows and producing a record amount of milk.

DATCP records show that 91 percent of state dairy operations are Grade A certified, with nine percent licensed as Grade B.

Wisconsin has been keeping track of dairy farm numbers since 1950. At that time, the state had 143,000 dairy operations and accounted for about four percent of the nation's total dairy farms.

Total licensed dairy herds in Wisconsin during the past decade:

2022: 6,533
2021: 6,932
2020: 7,292
2019: 8,110
2018: 8,801
2017: 9,304
2016: 9,695
2015: 10,081
2014: 10,541
2013: 11,155
2012: 11,761
2011: 12,467

** Note: We ask other members of the media to please credit Wisconsin Ag Connection if you choose to share this information with your audience.

Other Wisconsin Headlines
Sturdy-Built Mfg.
Sheah Auguers/SD Ellenbecker
Copyright © 2022 - All Rights Reserved.