Estimated milk production costs

March 2021

Showing GB milk production costs these estimates include the costs of rearing replacement heifers. They are averages of the previous 12 month period.

Latest estimated costs

These costs are estimates. You can find more detail on how they are calculated under “Additional information”, further down this page.

Production costs vary between farms. If you would like to know more about the range in production costs, you can find out more by downloading the Dairy Performance Results 2018/19.

Estimated GB milk production costs (including replacement heifer rearing) for the 12 months ending December 2020

Additional information

  • The costs on this page are based on farm accounts from over 300 dairy farms. We have used costs for the 2018/19 financial year and adjusted them for the most recent changes in:
    • Input prices
    • Concentrate usage
    • Milk yields
    • Milk solids
  • The cost of rearing replacement heifers is included.
  • The costs are averages for the previous 12 months. December 2020 costs are the average for the 12 months from January 2020 to December 2020.
  • If you would like to explore milk production costs in more detail, you can download the Dairy Performance Results 2018/19. This includes data from over 300 GB dairy farms, which the figures on this page are based on.
  • The cost estimates on this page are for guidance only, to help put recent market changes into context.
  • We show estimated costs for AYR, autumn and spring calving systems, to allow you to compare your own costs with figures for the system you use.
  • Farms were ranked by the ratio of their outputs to inputs (a measure of their productivity) to produce the top, middle and bottom sets.
  • Full economic cost of production is the total cost of milk production, including:
    • A value for unpaid family labour
    • Depreciation of machinery, equipment and buildings and
    • An imputed rental value for owned land.
  • Cash cost of production only includes costs that the farm will literally make a payment transaction for. Therefore it does not include:
    • A value for unpaid family labour
    • Depreciation of machinery, equipment and buildings and
    • An imputed rental value for owned land.
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