GB milk production sees a subdued spring peak

Wednesday, 24 May 2023

There was a downturn in GB daily milk deliveries in the week ending 13 May, suggesting we have passed the peak. According to the latest data, the highest daily figure was 37.46m litres on 5 May* alongside the 7-day rolling average which appears to have peaked at 37.18m litres*.

  line graph tracking the daily milk volumes delivered in GB

The spring flush has so far seen volumes at a similar level to last year with the peak day only 0.2% above the highest individual day in 2022. This is down 0.9% from our March forecast as cooler and wetter weather limited grazing opportunities due to the saturated ground. This meant farmers could not fully capitalise on good grass growth in April and May.

While the height of the peak is one factor, how long these higher volumes last for also impacts the availability of milk. In 2022 we saw a rapid fall from the peak which reduced summer volumes, however higher milk prices, teamed with favourable autumn weather conditions, encouraged production growth in the autumn and winter. With farmgate milk prices continuing to ease, input costs remaining historically high and prices for cull cows still climbing, lower milk production is likely to be a particular concern this season. We will look at this further next month when we update our forecast.


*Please note this data may be subject to future revisions.

Image of staff member Freya Shuttleworth

Freya Shuttleworth

Senior Analyst (Livestock)

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