California is indeed the breadbasket, or perhaps the cornucopia, to the world. Consider this: An impressive 57 agricultural products from the state were given individual listing on a sub-list with $18 billion in exports. These totals did not even include a mixture of foods and ag products that contributed an additional $2.7 billion in sales. That total alone would surpass the sales from most states.

Almonds topped all ag products even surpassing dairy products sales with $5.1 billion in total exports. Dairy was a firm second with a $1.6 billion sales total. Walnuts was third at $1.49 billion; wine fourth, $1.48 billion; and pistachios fifth, $848 million.

Almonds and dairy split

Almonds’ portion of California’s export pie continues to grow, moving from 19.3 percent of all of the Golden State’s ag sales in 2013 to an even more impressive 24.9 percent in 2015.

Dairy, on the other hand, is trending downward. It fell from 11.2 percent each for 2013 and 2014, to 7.9 percent in the 2015. Part of that downturn can be explained by the value of milk as determined by mailbox milk prices. Overall, California’s pay price was $18.26 in 2013, $21.83 in 2014, and $15.08 in 2016. In other words, products became less expensive for importers.

Where does California stand among dairy states?

Overall, one in three dairy products exported from the United States came from a California dairy farm. That 33.1 percent total dropped slightly from 2014’s 36.2 percent. Considering that California produces 20 percent of the nation’s milk, this export total becomes even more impressive.

What were the top dairy export destinations?

It stands to reason that American’s number one dairy customer also ranked as California’s top purchaser:

  1. Mexico, 28 percent of dairy products
  2. China and Hong Kong, 9 percent
  3. Canada, 9 percent
  4. Japan, 5 percent
  5. Indonesia, 5 percent
  6. Vietnam, 5 percent

To glean more details, download California Agricultural Exports 2015-2016. It’s an easy read containing only 14 pages.

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(c) Hoard's Dairyman Intel 2017
May 8, 2017

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