Fluid Milk Sales & Consumption Summary
Continuing a long term trend, per capita consumption of fluid milk products declined in 2011 by 6.2 pounds or 0.71 gallons. The 174.3 pounds (20.3 gallons) of fl uid milk products consumed in 2011 was the lowest level of per capita consumption on record.
The largest year-to-year declines were for whole and reduced fat white milk; per capita consumption of whole white milk fell by 1.4 pounds to a record low of 45.0 pounds, while reduced fat white milk fell to 57.6 pounds, the lowest level since the 1980's. Meanwhile, per capita consumption of lowfat white milk increased to 25.7 pounds, a new record high. Nonfat white milk per capita consumption decreased to 25.3 pounds; while per capita consumption of flavored milk decreased by 3.7% to 13.0 pounds.
Per capita consumption of fluid cream products, such as half-and-half, light cream and heavy cream, fell for the fourth consecutive year in 2011 to 7.88 pounds. Sour cream consumption per person decreased for the fourth consecutive year in 2011 to 4.06 pounds. Cottage cheese per capita consumption also fell in 2011 to 2.29 pounds, the lowest level on record.
Most of the fluid milk products sold at food and drug stores in the U.S. are in gallon containers. The volume of white milk sold in that size container in 2011 totaled 2.9 billion gallons, representing approximately $9.7 billion dollars in sales. Half-gallon containers accounted for 700 million gallons and $3.6 billion dollars in retail sales in 2011. Combined, these two containers represent 98% of the volume of white milk sold and 96% of the total sales value. Sales of whole white milk are responsible for only 27% of the volume sold and for 28% of the dollar sales.
Updated December 2012