European dairy prices have kicked off the new year in a positive fashion following record retail demand over the Christmas period. Spot prices for butter, cheese and milk powders have all lifted slightly in the last 10 days, which followed last week’s 4% increase of the GDT index.

On cheese markets, spot prices for cheddar increased another €50/t last week to hit €3,180/t, while mozzarella prices increased to highs of €2,700/t. Meanwhile, European spot market prices for butter increased €50/t last week to hit €3,300/t.

Dairy traders in Europe are reporting very strong demand for staples like butter, cheese and fresh milk, particularly from supermarket buyers. This strong demand, which follows a record Christmas trading period for the grocery retail sector across Europe in recent weeks, is helping dairy prices to hold firm in Europe.

On powder markets, solid export demand for milk powders is helping to support prices. Spot market quotes for skimmed milk powder (SMP) increased to highs of €2,230/t last week, while the price of whole milk powder (WMP) was unchanged at just under €2,800/t.

ONIL, the Algerian state agency for buying dairy commodities on the world market, is expected to issue a new tender for milk powders later this month, which could support European powder prices even further.