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Drop in England and Wales milk producer numbers

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Staff Writer | December 13, 2018
Wales milk
Britain   For most of 2018 the annual exit rate had slowed even further

Latest data from the Food Standards Agency (FSA) in England and Wales shows another drop in milk producer numbers in December, in addition to the drop in November.

The last two months show 83 producers leaving the industry, a significant increase on the exit rate compared with previous months. Since mid-2016, there has been a steady slowing in the annual rate of exit from the industry.

For most of 2018 the annual exit rate had slowed even further, but the latest two months bring the rate back up to those seen mid-2016. This suggests that this could be the start of an increased rate of exit from the industry.

It is possible that this loss of milk producers comes as a knock-on impact of the adverse weather conditions experienced earlier this year resulting in lack of feed availability and possible compromised reproductive performance.

Since 1970 there has been a steady decline in the number of milk producers. However, the trend to larger herd sizes and increasing average yield per cow has maintained a relatively steady total milk output. The future shape of the industry and the impact of Brexit and other influencing factors remains to be fully realised.


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