UK wholesale prices
Updated 27 July 2020
Indicative average prices for UK dairy wholesale markets, including bulk cream, butter, skimmed milk powder (SMP) and mild Cheddar cheese.
Wholesale markets were relatively stable in July, with either steadiness or small movements reported. Currency fluctuations brought a shift in some prices. Markets started to quieten down as part of the usual summer holiday season beginning. Shifts in the monthly averages were in part due to price movements through June and into the start of July, with prices more stable in July proper.
Fat prices were mixed in July, with a two-tier market emerging. Butter prices eased a little through the month, though some reported steadiness. The overall monthly average was still up on the June average, but this was from price rises through June and into the start of July.
Meanwhile, good demand for fresh product supported the cream market. Prices were relatively stable, moving within a narrow band, but demand kept prices up while the butter market eased. By the end of the month, cream prices were above the equivalent returns in the butter market.
SMP markets were generally quiet. Although reported as flat within the month, the quieter market delivered a lower average price in July compared with June. There were some reports of slight movement in either direction, likely influenced by currency fluctuations.
Mild cheddar prices were steady to slightly up in July. Markets were quiet, with reports of buyers already covered from earlier purchasing and processors focused on rebuilding stocks.
Prices have been compiled by talking to dairy product sellers, traders and buyers. Panel discussions on market conditions and prices covered trades agreed for the period 1 to 27 July. Prices reported are indicative of values achieved over the reporting period for spot trade (excludes contracted prices). The published prices will not necessarily match the actual price received by a milk processor as this will depend, amongst other things, on the proportion of product that is sold on the spot market and the proportion sold under longer term contracts and at what price this is done. The “average” prices should be used to track trends while the commentary will contain prices seen through the month.