EU milk production increased 5.6% in January 2016 compared to the corresponding period in 2015, the latest figures from the Milk Market Observatory (MMO) show.

Ireland, Luxembourg and Belgium posted the strongest increases in milk production for January, with Irish milk production up 19.5%.

The figures show that EU liquid milk production was back 1% on January 2015.

Butter production in the EU was up 5.8% on January last year, while cheese production increased by 1.3%.

Skimmed milk powder (SMP) production in January 2016 is up 12.7% on the corresponding month last year. This figure comes as EU Member States offered 93,539t of SMP to public intervention so far this year.

Over half of the EU public intervention scheme volumes (109,000t) were filled by Member States in the first eight weeks of the year.

To date, Ireland has offered 5,996t of SMP to the measure.


Meanwhile, at world level, milk production of major producers increased by 1.4% in 2015, mainly due to EU and US milk production.

MMO figures show that EU milk production was up my 3.5m tonnes while in the US, volumes increased by over 1m tonnes.

However, US production growth was lower than expected at 1.2%. The USDA forecast for 2016 is for US milk production to increase by 1.6%.

Looking down under and the MMO has said that the production decrease announced for New Zealand for the new season (minus 6%) might prove lower (minus 2%).

Although import demand has basically not been growing on the world market in 2015, Commission figures show that EU exports performed particularly well in volume terms, but at lower price levels.