California lost 99 dairies in 2008, reports the Dairy Marketing Branch of the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA).
Dairies in California continue to relocate to other states or are shutting down completely.
Stanislaus County recorded the largest decrease with 29 dairies, followed by Merced County with a decline of 15 operations. Sacramento was the only county that recorded an increase, adding one dairy in 2008.
Overall, the Northern California region showed the largest change from 2007, losing 49 dairies. The Central Valley, the state's major milkshed, showed a decline of 36 dairies, compared to a loss of only four operations in 2007. The Southern California region saw a decrease of 14 dairies.
To view a map with the county-by-county breakdown of California's dairy losses, go to: /files/Dib_Mar2009.pdf.
Catherine Merlo is Western editor for Dairy Today. You can reach her at email@example.com.