Market Indicators

Updated 25 November 2021

The Actual Milk Price Equivalent (AMPE), Milk for Cheese Value Equivalent (MCVE) and Milk Market Value (MMV) provide general estimates on market returns and the current market value of milk. They are based on UK wholesale price movements and can be used to identify general market price trends. They are updated on a monthly basis.


  • 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) ais an indicator of the factory gate value of a litre of milk used for mild Cheddar and whey powder/butter.

  • MMV (Milk Market Value) is an indicator of the average market value of a litre of milk based on typical utilisation of milk in the UK.
    Movements in the MMV correlate strongly with changes in farmgate milk prices in 3 months’ time.

table of AMPE and MCVE values to Nov21
graph of AMPE and MCVE to Nov21
table of milk market values to Nov21

graph of milk market values to Nov21

Additional information

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 is available to download below.

The next update on production costs will take place on publication of the ONS quarterly manufacturing cost indexes (21 Dec 2021).

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.

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

Projected farmgate milk price changes

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, MCVE, MMV)

While AHDB seeks to ensure that the information contained on this webpage is accurate at the time of publication, no warranty is given in respect of the information and data provided. You are responsible for how you use the information. To the maximum extent permitted by law, AHDB accepts no liability for loss, damage or injury howsoever caused or suffered (including that caused by negligence) directly or indirectly in relation to the information or data provided in this publication.

All intellectual property rights in the information and data on this webpage belong to or are licensed by AHDB. You are authorised to use such information for your internal business purposes only and you must not provide this information to any other third parties, including further publication of the information, or for commercial gain in any way whatsoever without the prior written permission of AHDB for each third party disclosure, publication or commercial arrangement. For more information, please see our Terms of Use and Privacy Notice or contact the Director of Corporate Affairs at  © Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board. All rights reserved.