Milk bottles (c) Rex Features

Dairy processors bottled 589,400t of liquid milk in April – 1.5% more than last year, according to provisional data from DEFRA. Cumulatively, liquid milk production for the 12 months to April was 1.8% higher than the previous year, at 7.1m tonnes.

Butter production reached 11,210t in April – an 11.8% rise on last year, with rolling production up by 10.7%, to almost 12,900t. Cheese production stood at 36,370t for the month, 2.1% up on the year, with cumulative supplies reaching 392,560t, which was 2.4% higher than the previous year.

On the other side of the globe, Fonterra’s latest auction saw average prices ease by 0.5% from the previous sale, to a weighted value of US $3,042/t (£1,934/t). Skimmed milk powder fell by the greatest margin, of 4.8%, with July prices up by 3% but September contracts down by 12.6%. In contrast, whole milk powder rose by 2.7%, with August contracts up by 4.7%. Overall average values fell by 1.5% for August, 3.7% for September and 1.6% for October, before improving later in the year, up by 2.2% and 2.6% for November and December, respectively.

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