Milk production continues to lag well behind last year, with a sluggish increase towards the spring peak.
UK production totalled 1.059bn litres in January, 59.4m litres less than the same time last year, according to provisional figures from the RPA. That was 19.5m litres more than was produced in December, compared with a 20.5m litre jump last year and a 24.6m litre increase the previous year. Cumulative production now stands at 10.88bn litres – 354.5m litres below the same time last year. Butterfat dropped to 4.11% in January, but is still high on a cumulative basis, at 4.06%.
Meanwhile, DairyCo has published its latest milk price league table for December, with 17 price rises announced for the month. “Price increases continued to apply to both liquid and manufacturing contracts, with the split between the two types remaining fairly even,” said the report.
High spot milk prices meant cheese producers had diverted milk to the liquid market, with cheese stocks falling as a result. “Cheese markets have started to respond to the tight supply situation, with average prices in January up £50/t compared with December.”