Rabobank is out with its Global Dairy Top 20 and America’s highest ranking dairy company with headquarters in the United States — Dairy Farmers of America — slid from fourth to sixth place in the 2019 rankings.
“Dairy Farmers of America slipped to sixth place, with sales dropping by 7.5 percent following lower milk and commodity prices,” wrote Rabobank dairy analyst Saskia van Battum. Those numbers could change slightly in the coming year, as the cooperative acquired a U.S. dairy plant from Agropur, and St. Alban’s Cooperative Creamery recently merged into the Kansas City, Kansas-based entity.
Other major U.S. companies on Rabobank’s Global Dairy Top 20 list included:
- Dean Foods at No. 11
- Kraft Heinz holding the No. 14 position for the second straight year
- Schreiber Foods, which climbed one spot from No. 20 to No. 19 in the past year
Actually more U.S. companies
The dairy world has truly gone global. Of the top seven dairy companies, all but one have operations in the United States. To illustrate that point, let’s compare the Rabobank Dairy Top 20 list for 2018 with the Dairy Foods’ top 100 dairy processors for 2017. For an-easy-to-follow analysis, the companies will be listed based on the Rabobank list:
- Nestlé — $24.3 billion in global sales; $14.1 billion from North America. That’s a 58 percent North American sales base.
- Lactalis — $20.8 billion in global sales; $2.8 billion from North America. That’s a 13.5 percent North American sales base.
- Danone — $18 billion in global sales; $6 billion from North America. That’s a 33.3 percent North American sales base.
- Fonterra — $14.3 billion in global sales; a small North American footprint.
- FrieslandCampina — $13.8 billion in global sales; some U.S. sales.
- Dairy Farmers of America — $13.6 billion in global and U.S. sales.
- Arla Foods — $12.4 billion in global sales; $139 million from North America. That’s a 1.1 percent North American sales base.
Canada’s two major players
Canada has two companies in Rabobank’s Global Dairy Top 20. The publicly traded Saputo ranks No. 9, while Agropur, a dairy cooperative in Canada, ranks No. 18. However, even though both are headquartered in Canada, they rely heavily on the United States for sales.
- Saputo — $11 billion in sales. Of that total, 53 percent came from the U.S.; 35 percent from Canada; and 12 percent from other international countries. The percentages are based on the 2018 Saputo annual report.
- Agropur — $5.2 billion in sales. Of that total, 42.7 percent came from the U.S. and 57.3 percent came from Canada, according to the 2018 Agropur annual report.