Dairy markets are a bit more mixed this week, with butter and whole milk powder (WMP) increasing in price and cheese and skim milk powder (SMP) decreasing.

Neither change is substantial, it’s more of a reflection of the holding position in markets at present, with no clear market direction.

In announcing its milk price for this month, Kerry said that the market has “decelerated in recent weeks due to weakened demand”.

There is not much evidence of this based on the European spot market, as WMP and cheese have been relatively stable. Most volatility is in butter, which has been gaining and SMP which has been falling. The Global Dairy Trade (GDT) is more or less unchanged from the start of the year.

At the GDT pulse auction this week, WMP shot up by 5.2%, but, in real terms, this only matches the prices secured for WMP at last week’s main auction.

SMP prices also increased a shade at this week’s pulse, but is still short of the prices secured at the main auction.

On the supply side, the latest news from the Netherlands is that milk supply there is down 1.4% for April compared with 2023. This follows on from a 1.3% decline in March volumes.

Corrected for fat, the fall in supply is actually greater at 2.4%. Official figures for April in Ireland are not out yet, but it won’t make pretty reading.

Most of the co-ops are now at or gone past peak production. It seems that last weekend was peak for southern processors and with rain since then, maintaining peak will be unattainable.