Dairy Crest’s market-tracking milk price has risen very slightly for the second month running.
Producers with milk committed to the formula will be paid 28.648p/litre in May – just 0.001p/litre more than in April.
The tracker now commands a 5.43p/litre premium over Dairy Crest’s standard liquid milk price, following a 0.006p/litre increase last month.
Bulk cream values dropped £100/t from February to March, as the market weakens in the run-up to the spring flush.
And another 2p/litre came off the four-pint milk price in retailers, taking the national average to 108p/litre.
On costs, fertiliser values rose for the sixth month since last summer and red diesel crept up as the oil markets stabilised. But the price of 18% concentrate fell £4/t to £232/t.
Michael Masters, secretary of supplier group Dairy Crest Direct, said cream prices could slide under £1,000/t in April, which would put pressure on the formula.
“Through the rolling sequencing of the formula parameters, if cream and concentrate values continue to falter, forward formula pricing for June is looking less buoyant,” he said.