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Lactose, US

This page contains wholesale prices for Lactose (US), updated weekly.

The prices for lactose recorded over the last ten weeks are listed in the table, while the graph below illustrates price trends over the past three years in € and in local currency.

The graphs below compare:
  • Lactose production and stocks with the market price trends;
  • WPC and Lactose prices in US with Sweet Whey and Skimmed Milk Powder price in Germany.

N.B.:

Lactose is sugar naturally present in milk.

During cheese production, approx. 80-90% of lactose moves into serum thus contributing to make up a part of it (approx. 5%).

Lactose is then recovered from serum in form of monohydrate alpha-lactose through processes of concentration (by evaporation), and crystallization.

Sugar extraction takes place by centrifugation; afterwards lactose is dried and ground.

There are three kinds of lactose: edible lactose, refined lactose, and pharmaceutical lactose, but, as a rule, American and European prices (see the table and graph below) refer to edible typology.

Thanks to its little sweetening power, lactose is applied in several edible preparation, especially chocolate and derivates, bakery and pharmaceutical products; it is also employed in the feed sector.

Furthermore, by means of special industrial processes as hydrolysis (enzymatic and catalytic splitting of lactose into glucose and galactose), enzymes treatment or other specific procedures (catalytic isomerization), starting from lactose many derived products can be obtained.

Among the best known and most important derivates are lactulose, lactitol and the GOS (galacto-oligosaccharides), used as prebiotics (substances intended to promote the growth of bifidobacteria and milk bacteria in the intestines) in many edible products.

The increased cheese production in the US generates as a consequence the availability of serum and, therefore, the possibility to extract a larger amount of lactose.

(This page has been realized with the contribute of Pier Luigi Vecchia, Food Technology expert)

 
Survey Date
US - Weekly prices of Lactose
Edible, non Pharmaceutical
US $ per lb US $ per ton € per ton
min / max min / max ± on prev. price min / max ± on prev. price
Friday 14 Jun 2019
0,2000 / 0,4800 441 / 1.058 0,00% 391 / 937 -0,14%
Friday 7 Jun 2019
0,2000 / 0,4800 441 / 1.058 0,00% 391 / 939 -1,23%
Friday 31 May 2019
0,2000 / 0,4800 441 / 1.058 +0,74% 396 / 950 +1,22%
Friday 24 May 2019
0,1950 / 0,4800 430 / 1.058 0,00% 384 / 946 +0,14%
Friday 17 May 2019
0,1950 / 0,4800 430 / 1.058 0,00% 384 / 945 -0,09%
Friday 10 May 2019
0,1950 / 0,4800 430 / 1.058 0,00% 384 / 945 +0,17%
Friday 3 May 2019
0,1950 / 0,4800 430 / 1.058 0,00% 383 / 944 -0,79%
Friday 26 Apr 2019
0,1950 / 0,4800 430 / 1.058 -0,74% 386 / 951 +0,40%
Friday 19 Apr 2019
0,2000 / 0,4800 441 / 1.058 -3,55% 392 / 941 -3,43%
Friday 12 Apr 2019
0,2250 / 0,4800 496 / 1.058 0,00% 440 / 939 -0,40%
n.q.: not quoted price
NOTE: The conversion US $ / € for each quotation is calculated using the exchange rate of the previous day.

Prices Mostly, F.O.B. edible Carlot or Trucklot quantities in totes, 50 lb and 25 kg bags; since January 2010: prices mostly edible, non pharmaceutical including spot sales and up to 3 month contracts.
USDA pricing series is developed by gathering lactose prices in phone surveys with U.S. manufacturers and other industry contacts that are buying and selling truckload quantities of U.S. produced lactose. The lactose may be packaged in bags, totes or other packaging, but needs to be carlot/truckload quantities. The prices are for spot sales or short term (up to 3 month long) contracts. The transactions need to be first sales, FOB plant. The transactions may also include marketing agent sales. A mostly price series may be used to more closely define the majority of trades. The lactose needs to be edible and non-pharmaceutical, but is not separated further by mesh size or other quality grades. That is, the price series would include unground and ground lactose and a variety of mesh sizes, including 40 – 200 mesh, etc. [source: USDA]
Source: USDA
USD
$/ton US
Average Monthly prices of Lactose
Edible, non Pharmaceutical
2004 2009 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 % on prev. month % on 2018
January 496 309 1.323 728 450 818 473 824 +1,01% +74,34%
February 496 281 1.312 632 477 827 480 716 -13,04% +49,43%
March 499 291 1.317 547 500 842 482 734 +2,46% +52,40%
April 524 313 1.363 523 528 890 513 762 +3,79% +48,66%
May 524 338 1.317 519 562 904 564 745 -2,21% +32,22%
June 523 378 1.259 480 573 884 612 750 +0,59% +22,52%
July 505 442 1.208 442 607 829 679
August 480 542 1.183 422 645 769 716
September 442 570 1.039 419 704 661 741
October 413 696 935 408 752 584 766
November 408 741 893 408 777 537 773
December 408 775 857 420 800 492 816
Average 476 473 1.169 498 615 751 635 754
Change (1) - -0,70% +147,08% -57,42% +23,55% +22,06% -15,36% +44,43%
USDA
1) change from the same period of previous year , except for years 2009, 2014, where the change is from the same period 5 years ago
  = min price
= max price