Commenting on this week’s Global Dairy Trade (GDT) auction results, IFA National Dairy Committee Chairman Sean O’Leary said it was clear that butterfat prices were continuing to lift towards more sustainable levels, while all other products bar WMP were also well up in prices. He urged co-ops to hold milk prices and to develop a support strategy to help suppliers manage through a turbulent few months.
Mr O’Leary remarked in particular on the fact that prices for all contracts all the way to June 15 were well up (with the exception of WMP), indicating that global dairy markets were now starting to show signs of recovery from what were universally acknowledged to be unsustainable levels.
“It is heartening that SMP prices have started to increase for the first time in several auctions. While WMP is the most traded product in quantitative terms through the auction, it is a product Ireland has little involvement in. A recovering SMP price and strong lifts in butterfat prices for the last two auctions are far more relevant to our product mix,” he said.
“While we could be witnessing the early stages of global dairy market recovery, Irish farmers will need strong support from co-ops, banks and advisors over the next number of months to manage their way through a turbulent period with price levels more than likely below what they had expected,” he said.
“As we come up to the time of the month when co-op boards meet to set milk prices, I would urge them to hold the strongest possible prices and to set out a comprehensive strategy on input pricing, merchant credit, superlevy collection methods and other means through which they can support farmers through the transition out of quotas,” he concluded.