Updated 25 May 2021

The Actual Milk Price Equivalent (AMPE) and Milk for Cheese Value Equivalent (MCVE) that provide general estimates on markets returns. They are based on wholesale price movements and are used as a basis to identify market price trends. They are updated on a monthly basis.


The AMPE and MCVE calculations have been revised from August 2020 to take into account higher milk compositional quality, higher production costs and varying lactose powder prices.

A summary of the changes can be found at the bottom of this page. While we will report on the 2020 versions of the indicators as of 27 August 2020, the previous calculations (2014) can still be found in the spreadsheet available to download at the bottom of this page

  • AMPE (Actual Milk Price Equivalent) is an indicator of the factory gate value of a litre of milk used for butter and skimmed milk powder
  • MCVE (Milk for Cheese Value Equivalent) assess returns from mild Cheddar and whey powder/butter.

Additional information

Please note that AMPE and MCVE calculations do not include the cost of transport of milk to the dairy.

According to a 2014 survey of members of Dairy UK, the range of transport costs that can be encountered in the UK dairy industry are from 0.9ppl to 4.8ppl. The lower limit typically applies to purchasers with compact milk fields with larger farmers, while purchasers with geographically dispersed milk fields and smaller, less accessible farmers pay up to 2.4ppl on average. For some individual collection routes that involve reloading costs, transport costs can be as high as 4.8ppl.

AMPE and MCVE calculator Latest UK wholesale prices MCVE calculations for selected EU countries Summary of changes to dairy market indicators (2020) Dairy market indicators review (2014)

Download dataset

Market indicators (AMPE and MCVE 2020)