After a number of years of decline, Dutch milk supply was firmly back in growth mode in 2020. The latest figures from Eurostat show Dutch milk production for 2020 finished the year at just under 13.5bn litres, which is an increase of 1.2%, or an extra 160m litres, on 2019 milk supplies.

This is the highest level milk production in the Netherlands has been at since 2017, when Dutch dairy farmers produced a combined 13.8bn litres. The majority of the milk supply growth in the Netherlands took place in the first half of 2020, with production volumes up 2% to 5% in the first six months of the year.

However, in the second half of 2020 there was a noticeable slowdown in milk production volumes. From August to December, Dutch monthly milk supplies were either flat or slightly down on the previous year.

This drop off in production volumes in the final months of 2020 suggests spring milk supply in the Netherlands for 2021 could be subdued, which would certainly help European dairy prices. The Netherlands is one of the largest milk producing countries in Europe and has a major focus on export markets, similar to Ireland.

Any slowdown in Dutch milk output this spring will help support dairy prices in the first half of 2021.