Irish milk producers have suffered a 120 million hit on returns as the recent drought and feed shortages halted seven years of growth in the dairy sector.
According to the Irish Independent, industry officials have admitted that expansion has stalled as it stubbled to fight through and recover from the summer’s sunny spell.
Operators initially predicted a growth of somewhere between 4-5% for 2018, but the total volume of milk processed by Irish and Northern Irish dairies looks set to hold at 7.5 billion litres, 300-400 million litres short of expectations.
Rise & Fall
The Irish Independent reports that since the turn of the decade, milk volumes processed by Irish dairies has increased by 50%, with ow numbers growing by approximately 40%.
Despite expectations for a return to growth in 2019, farmers have lost a lot of confidence and a lot of money, and would be more conservative about increasing numbers.
Teagasc estimate that fodder supplies on heavily-stocked dairy units in the south and south-east, Ireland’s most affected areas from the drought, are 25-30% off requirements.
© 2018 Checkout – your source for the latest Irish retail news. Article by Aidan O’Sullivan. Click subscribe to sign up for the Checkout print edition.