The following is from the USDA's Dairy Market News for the week of Jan. 21 to 25. Download the complete report.

The USDA's AMS service reported this week that total organic milk products sales for November 2012 were 191 million pounds, an increase of 9% from November 2011.

Organic whole milk sales for November 2012 of 49 million pounds were up 16% compared with November 2011. And organic fat-reduced milk sales were 142 million pounds (6.8%) in the same period.

This contrasts with a 1.7% decline in November 2012 for total fluid milk products adjusted (which includes organic and non-organic) compared with one year ago. This total Fluid Milk products data is adjusted for calendar year composition.

Total Conventional Milk Products, which does not include organic milk, has a 0.9% decrease in sales comparing November 2012 with November, 2011, and a -1.5% decline comparing November 2011 year to date to November 2012 year to date.

Nationally advertised price comparison
Organic dairy advertising volume strengthened to a level not reached since mid-September. Organic milk ads are the greatest factor in overall ad numbers this period, supplemented by higher organic butter ad numbers than during the last several months.

Organic milk ads included ads for organic flavored milk, a relatively infrequent occurrence. Organic milk ads comprised 62% of all organic ads, followed by organic butter, 18%; organic yogurt, 15%; and organic cheese, 5%. A very few ads for organic cottage cheese and sour cream appeared, enough below 1% each so as not to affect rounded percentages.

Some organic butter ads continued to offer prices below the highest prices of advertised conventional butter. Organic cheese in 8 ounce blocks and 8 ounce shredded had weighted average advertised prices only a few cents higher than for conventional cheese counterparts.

Advertising information presented is compiled from nearly 16,000 surveyed newspaper supermarket ads for the period January 12, 2013, to January 25, 2013, identifying weekly “specials” and containing organic dairy content. Surveyed ads reflect advertised “specials” and not the range of non-advertised supermarket cooler prices.