The impacts of dairy expansion have been ‘hugely significant’ in terms of return on investment, including state support, and across the Irish economy.
This is according to food economist Ciaran Fitzgerald, who prepared a paper in advance of the Teagasc Moorepark Open Day, which takes today, emphasising the huge contribution the Irish dairy sector has on the economy.
Fitzgerald said that the massive spend by the newly expanded dairy sector on raw materials, wages and services now accounts for 10% of spending by all industry.
The industry supports over 60,000 jobs from 19,000 dairy farmers to others engaged in milk processing/distribution, export marketing and research.
Ireland exports almost 90% of its dairy output to over 100 countries across the globe, and the value of these exports has doubled in line with a 50% increase in milk production since EU quotas were removed in 2015, Fitzgerald said.
He said that every euro of exports of dairy products represents 90 cent of every euro of spend in the Irish economy.
According to Fitzgerald, the dairy economy’s growth comes from “a combination of a major surge in global demand for dairy products, particularly in emerging economies, and the ending of supply controls in the EU with the abolition of milk quotas in 2015”.
He added that the transition from this support-based regime to a more, open and volatile world market driven scenario “has presented huge challenges in terms of dealing with price and income volatility”.
Last year the total volume of milk processed in Ireland almost reached 8.3 million litres, while it produces over 7.5 billion litres of milk annually.
© 2019 Checkout – your source for the latest Irish retail news. Article by Aidan O’Sullivan. Click sign-up to subscribe to Checkout.