Irish milk production up 1.5% year-on-year in January

Domestic milk intake by creameries and pasteurisers was estimated at 150.9 million litres for January 2018, according to the Central Statistics Office (CSO).

This was 1.5% above the corresponding 2017 figure, which amounted to 148.7 million litres for January of that year.

There was also a sizeable increase in whole milk sales for the month of January year-on-year. During the first month of the year 27.8 million litres were sold.

This is 5.8% higher than the 26.2 million litres sold for the corresponding period in 2017.

January milk production
Source: Central Statistics Office

Comparing the January 2018 milk produce figures with those for January 2017 shows that the total milk sold for human consumption also increased by 2.8% to 45.6 million litres.

In addition, it was found that butter production was up 49.5% to 7,760t.

Northern Irish milk boom

Meanwhile, in Northern Ireland, dairy farms produced a record milk volume output in December, according to the latest agricultural survey figures.

It follows on from a record November, when producers also saw prices break the 33p/L barrier – with the average litre fetching 33.29p.

However, despite the continuing drive on production, December saw the average farm-gate price paid per litre of milk slide slightly to 32.65p/L.

Milk production in Northern Ireland in 2017 was 4% higher than 2016, reaching a record volume of 2.284 billion litres.

The figures also showed that the region’s dairy herd stood at 312,500 cows in December 2017 – marginally up on dairy cow numbers recorded in December 2016, but showing little or no difference when compared to the total dairy herd size in 2015.