**The USDA has released their December milk production reports, delayed by the 35-day government shutdown in December and January.

Cow numbers dropped again in December and previous reports were adjusted lower. October was down 2,000 head from the prior release and November lost 6,000 additional cows. December lost 3,000 after adjustments were taken into account to 9.351 million.

We have also reduced the milking herd by 16,000 head since September and 53,000 from our peak in May of 2018.

https://www.milkbusiness.com/blog/fewer-cow-more-milk-and-lower-prices?mkt/

**Australian wool producers are set to benefit from the suspension of South African wool exports to China due to an outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease.

South African wool leaders announced the industry decided to postpone a crucial wool auction due to China's customs department suspending "all greasy wool imports from South Africa.

It is awaiting official notification from China regarding the exact position of the China Inspection and Quarantine Bureau with regards to its imports.

https://www.abc.net.au/news/rural/2019-02-18/south-african-wool-market-shutdown-following-fmd-discovery/10821346?fbclid=IwAR0igCESzbJgwJ2Zh3-hd222_cgMwhDg2FToU8us1umZBqkmbdkoVdgsCwA#lightbox-content-lightbox-6

 

**A Minnesota dairy farmer isn’t saying you should refer to almond milk as nut juice, but he’s not saying you shouldn’t.

Al Overland tells agweb.com, “They can call it juice or beverage, or whatever they wish, but we just don’t want them to call it milk.”

The Food and Drug Administration is mulling whether to update its rules for how to label plant-based foods, and is being lobbied hard by both dairy and plant-based producers.

https://www.agweb.com/article/dairy-farmers-press-against-labeling-of-nut-milk/?mkt/