Irish milk supply to continue increasing this year and into the future

The Irish milk supply increased by 13% in 2015, according to figures from the industry and it is predicted to continue increasing.

CEO of Ornua, Kevin Lane, told the International Dairy Federation conference in Dublin this week that the milk supply in Ireland is projected to increase by 8-10% this year.

He also said that the Irish milk pool will continue to grow post Food Harvest 2020, which projects an increase in milk supply of 50% by 2020.

Lane said that Irish milk supply will possibly grow by a further 30-50% post 2020.

Last year, Irish milk supplies were over 13.3% or 750m litres higher over the course of 2015 compared to 2014, according to figures from the CSO.

This reflected milk quota removal in April 2015, a 6% rise in the dairy breeding herd and excellent grass growing conditions.

Meanwhile, the domestic milk intake by creameries and pasteurisers was estimated at 179.3m litres for December 2015.

Irish milk supply

The Irish milk supply increase comes as the EU increased production by 2% after the abolition of milk quotas in April 2015.

And the European Commission says a further increase in the number of dairy cows in older EU Member States (+1.2%) was recorded in November/December 2015 compared to last year.

According to the Commission, these developments imply further increases in EU milk deliveries in 2016, especially during the first quarter (+5%), which compares to the same period in 2015 when many farmers reduced production in countries at risk of exceeding their quota.