Increased milk production in May vs 2022 but below forecast

Thursday, 8 June 2023

GB milk production was estimated at 1,141 million litres in May, with daily deliveries averaging around 36.8 million litres per day. This is a volume increase of 0.5% from the previous year but 0.82% less than our March forecast estimated. The peak for GB milk production was reached on 5 May at 37.4m litres per day. Monthly production is down by 0.82% from our March forecast for a number of reasons. Margins have been squeezed by falling farmgate prices and ongoing (although falling) high costs giving farmers little incentive to push production. Cooler and wetter weather also limited grazing opportunities due to the saturated ground. This meant farmers could not fully capitalise on good grass growth in April and May.

Falling farmgate milk prices, coupled with announcements in price cuts by major retailers, is likely to curtail production further in the coming days. Dryer weather has allowed more turnout and allowed for a good first cut. However, a consistent pattern of dry weather for the past few weeks with little rain forecast has the potential to cause issues later in the summer. On the demand side, higher inflation has chipped away consumer demand and this has reduced the appetite of the processors for any price rises as yet. We will be publishing an updated milk production forecast later in July following the last update at the milk forecasting forum (7 March).

GB daily milk deliveries


Image of staff member Soumya Behera

Soumya Behera

Senior Analyst (Dairy)

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