It looks like China is trying to stockpile product for fear that another wave of COVID might sweep global trade.

Stats show Chinese imports are up. No doubt but the Chinese buying pattern is helping Irish and European sentiment - what will happen in the second half of the year is the 64 million dollar question.

Dairy imports

China's dairy imports in June totalled 253,000t, which is 41,300t and nearly 20% more than last year.

Cumulative imports for the year now total 1.6m tonnes, some 82,700t and 5.5% more.

June’s increase was largely thanks to whey, which posted a major 80+% increase on last year to nearly 56,000t, but the gain is less impressive when compared with 2018.

Whole milk powder (WMP), skim milk powder (SMP) and butter were all down around 6% at 36,300t, 23,400t and 4,770t.

Cumulative basis

On a cumulative basis so far this year, WMP totalled 411,343t, up 1.4%, while SMP totalled 157,498t, down over 12%.

Whey imports were 273,910t, up 32%, and butter was 50,045t, up 43%.

Closer to home, European dairy prices remain very stable, with little trade taking place right now.

Spot prices for butter haven’t changed in almost two months now and remain steady at €3,330/t, while spot market prices for SMP continue to trade around the €2,050/t mark.

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