EU milk collections decreased by 3% in September 2016 compared to September 2015, the latest figures from the EU Milk Market Observatory (MMO) show.
This is the fourth month in a row that EU milk production has fallen after falls in June, July and August.
Last month, milk collection figures were down 1.9% on August 2015, while July and June production was down 1.4% and 2.3% respectively.
For the period January to September, milk production in the EU was up 1.5% on the corresponding period last year with Luxembourg, Cyprus, the Netherlands and Ireland recording the highest increases.
Dutch milk production increased 9.8% in January to September this year, compared to the same period last year.
Irish production is up 6.2% in the year-to-date and German production is up 1.9%.
Irish Milk Production
The volume of Irish milk collected by creameries and pasteurisers in September 2016 fell 3.5% on the same month last year the latest figures from the Central Statistics Office (CSO) show.
Milk production was estimated at 583.2m litres for September 2016, down from the 604.2m litres that was sent to creameries in September last year.
It is the first time in five months that milk production has fallen year-on-year in Ireland.
Over 20,000t of SMP to be released from intervention stocks
Meanwhile, a tender procedure to release the first amounts (22,500t) of skimmed milk powder (SMP) out of public intervention stocks is to open today, Friday November 25.
Yesterday, Member States voted on the European Commission’s proposal to release some of the stocks that are in intervention.
The move reflects the encouraging signs of recovery being seen on the European milk market, with an increase of about 10% of the average price paid to producers in the last three months, according to the Commission.
This 22,500t of powder corresponds to just 6% of the total amount of 355,000t of SMP stored and taken off the markets since the opening of the measure in September 2014.