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Auckland, New Zealand—The price index on this week’s semimonthly Global Dairy Trade (GDT) dairy commodity auction, which was the 24th and final auction of 2021, declined 1.5 percent from the previous auction, held two weeks ago.

That’s the first decline in the GDT price index since the first auction in August. Since then, the price index has increased seven times and was unchanged once.

In this week’s GDT auction, which featured 158 participating bidders and 117 winning bidders, prices were higher for Cheddar cheese, skim milk powder, butter, anhydrous milkfat and lactose; and lower for whole milk powder. Buttermilk powder wasn’t offered on this week’s auction, and an average price wasn’t available for sweet whey powder.

Results from this week’s, with comparisons to the auction held two weeks ago, were as follows:

Cheddar cheese: The average winning price was $5,241 per metric ton ($2.38 per pound), up 0.5 percent. Average winning prices were: Contract 1 (January 2022), $5,156 per ton, down 3.8 percent; Contract 2 (February), $5,270 per ton, up 0.1 percent; Contract 3 (March), $5,206 per ton, down 0.7 percent; Contract 4 (April), $5,199 per ton, up 2.6 percent; Contract 5 (May), $5,365 per ton, up 2.9 percent; and Contract 6 (June), $5,415 per ton, down 1.5.

The average Cheddar price on GDT hasn’t declined since the second auction in September. During 2021, the average Cheddar price on the GDT auction ranged from a low of $1.79 per pound in July’s first auction to a high of $2.38 per pound in this week’s auction.

Skim milk powder: The average winning price was $3,745 per ton ($1.70 per pound), up 0.6 percent. Average winning prices were: Contract 1, 43,821 per ton, up 1.9 percent; Contract 2, $3,715 per ton, up 0.5 percent; Contract 3, $3,745 per ton, up 0.5 percent; Contract 4, $3,762 per ton, down 0.3 percent; and Contract 5, $3,805 per ton, up 1.1 percent.

The average skim milk powder price on GDT hasn’t declined since the second auction in July. During 2021, the average skim milk price on the GDT auction ranged from a low of $1.35 per pound in July’s second auction to a high of $1.70 per pound in this week’s auction.

Whole milk powder: The average winning price was $3,867 per ton ($1.75 per pound), down 3.3 percent. Average winning prices were: Contract 1, $3,853 per ton, down 4.1 percent; Contract 2, $3,855 per ton, down 3.1 percent; Contract 3, $3,871 per ton, down 3.4 percent; Contract 4, $3,910 per ton, down 2.0 percent; and Contract 5, $3,985 per ton, down 2.9 percent.

That’s the first decline in the average whole milk price since the first auction in October. During 2021, the average whole milk powder price on the GDT auction ranged from a low of $1.50 per pound in January’s first auction to a high of $1.98 per pound in March’s first auction.

Butter: The average winning price was $5,851 per ton ($2.65 per pound), up 1.0 percent. Average winning prices were: Contract 1, $5,935 per ton, up 0.8 percent; Contract 2, $5,835 per ton, up 1.0 percent; Contract 3, $5,840 per ton, up 0.9 percent; Contract 4, $5,850 per ton, up 1.2 percent; and Contract 5, $5,860 per ton, up 1.5 percent.

The average butter price hasn’t declined since the second auction in September. During 2021, the average butter price on the GDT auction ranged from a low of $2.00 per pound in July’s second auction to a high of $2.65 per pound in this week’s auction.

Anhydrous milkfat: The average winning price was $6,724 per ton ($3.05 per pound), up 0.9 percent. Average winning prices were: Contract 1, $6,649 per ton, down 1.1 percent; Contract 2, $6,762 per ton, up 0.9 percent; Contract 3, $6,748 per ton, up 1.0 percent; Contract 4, $6,750 per ton, up 2.3 percent; Contract 5, $6,651 per ton, up 0.2 percent; and Contract 6, $6,656 per ton, up 0.4 percent.

The anhydrous milkfat price hasn’t declined since the second auction in September. During 2021, the average anhydrous milkfat price on the GDT auction ranged from a low of $2.09 per pound in January’s first auction to a high of $3.05 per pound in this week’s auction.

Lactose: The average winning price was $1,390 per ton (63.0 cents per pound), up 3.7 percent. That was for Contract 2.

The average lactose price hasn’t declined since the first auction in August. During 2021, the average lactose price ranged from a low of 49.6 cents per pound in August’s first auction to a high of 63.1 cents per pound in the second auction in March.

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