China increased its dairy imports by 30pc during the first three months of this year, with butter the main driver in the increase.

New figures from the EU show that China is still the main world dairy importer of butter, wholemilk powder and whey powder, although total EU exports in this period, is 2pc below last year, while the value of these exports has decreased by -8pc.

China increased its dairy imports in terms of volume in the first three months of 2018 for butter (+30pc), for SMP (+11pc), for WMP (+10pc) and for whey powder (+12pc), while decreased for cheese (-5pc).

By May 2018, after China, Russia was the main butter importers, followed by the US and Australia.

Egypt and Singapore have shown significant increases in butter imports (+39pc and +24pc respectively). Japan, Russia, US and South Korea (US with 75pc EU origin) led the ranking of cheese importers by May 2018, but US with decreased volumes (-8pc) compared to last year, followed by Australia.

EU exports in the first five months of 2018 have increased in volume for SMP (+4pc), cheese (+1pc) and whey powder (+1pc).

On the contrary decreases have been observed for condensed milk (-16pc), WMP (-9pc), butter (-5pc) and butteroil (-2pc).

Up to May 2018 the US remained the main outlet for EU cheese exports, however with 9pc decrease compared to last year (25pc of the shipments originating in IT and 17pc in FR).

Article sourced from https://www.independent.ie