Dairy

Fonterra milk production continues to decline

By Jamieson Salter

Australia's milk production has continued to decline according to the 2020 Global Dairy Update, released by New Zealand dairy company Fonterra.

In November 2019, Australian milk production decreased 3.4 per cent, compared to November 2018.

Production for the 12 months to November 2019 was down 6.7 per cent on the previous 12 months.

Challenging farm conditions will continue to impact milk production in the current season as further reductions in the national herd has been predicted.

Fonterra milk collections continue to be impacted by challenging seasonal conditions, high on-farm input costs, decreased cow numbers and intense competition for milk.

Australian collections from Fonterra in December 2019 were 11.3 million kg of milk solids, down 13 per cent on December last season.

Fonterra collections across Australia for the six months to December 31 reached 60.5 million kg of milk solids, down 16.4 per cent on the same period last season.

Fonterra's season-to-date milk collection from Australia decreased by 16.4 per cent to 60.5 million kg of milk solids.

For Australia's dairy exports, declines were recorded across a broad range of products with skim milk powder, whole milk powder, cheese and whey down 55 857 MT.

This was largely offset by sustained increases in fluid milk products and infant formula, up a combined 52 095 MT.

In November 2019, Australian dairy exports decreased by 11.5 per cent, or 8 743 MT, compared to November 2018.

This was primarily driven by skim milk powder and infant formula, down a combined 7665 MT.

Exports for the 12 months to November were down one per cent, or 7 512 MT, on the previous comparable period.