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Dairy prices moved up for most part on EU wholesale markets

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Staff Writer | February 12, 2019
Prices of dairy moved up for the most part on EU wholesale markets during January, possibly on the back of tighter milk supplies in some regions of the EU.
Europe   SMP saw the largest increase
SMP saw the largest increase, with WMP and whey prices showing relatively smaller gains.

On the other hand, butter and some cheese prices fell marginally.

In terms of milk supplies, EU milk production contracted in November, falling 0.8% below the same month last year.

The main regions of France, Germany and the Netherlands were all down on the year, while Ireland showed significantly higher deliveries in the month.

However, in the year-to-November, cumulative milk production for the EU-28 was tracking above 2017 levels by 0.9%.

Butter prices fell marginally during January, declining by 0.6% on average from last month.

The overall drop was mitigated by a recovery in prices at the end of the month, as prices in the first half of the month continued the downward trend seen in December.

Internal demand, particularly for packaged butter, was reported to be strong, as is typical for this time of the year.

However, upward pressure on butter prices remains constrained by a lack of interest on the export market, due to the continued EU premium over Oceania prices.

Both internal and international demand for SMP was reported as strong and steady during January, which helped to lift prices by 7.4% during the month.

The recent clearance of SMP intervention stocks is likely to have supported this upward move as availability reduces.

WMP prices also moved up in January, supported by good internal demand and lower production.

On average, cheese prices remained relatively flat over the course of the month.

Prices movements by product type diverged however, with Cheddar moving up early in the month then remaining steady, while Edam and Gouda both saw a small reduction in price.

Emmental prices, after gaining early in the month, slipped through the month before jumping up as the month ended, leaving prices up overall on December.