UK wholesale prices

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Updated 27 January 2020

Indicative average prices for UK dairy wholesale markets, including bulk cream, butter, skimmed milk powder (SMP) and mild Cheddar cheese.


  • After the typical slow start to January, cream prices quickly moved up in the second week as buyers returned from the holiday period looking to fill immediate needs. Good availability of milk, combined with a strengthening pound relative to the euro, put pressure on prices, which have trended down over the remainder of the month.
  • The butter market was relatively quiet, and prices have therefore not moved considerably. There has been some downward pressure due to currency, but with limited trading taking place, the net impact on the average price was small.
  • SMP prices, which have been climbing steadily for some time, moved up again in January, albeit marginally. Currency movements kept the upward moves limited as product had to be discounted in order to secure sales on the continent.
  • The overall average for mild Cheddar remains steady.

Additional information

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 24 January.  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.

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UK wholesale prices