French milk production has gotten off to a very slow start for 2021.

According to official figures from Eurostat, French milk supply for the month of January was down more than 3% on the same month last year to just over 2bn litres.

This equates to a drop in production of more than 70m litres of milk compared with January 2020.

France is the second-largest milk producer in Europe after Germany and changes in its milk supply can have a major bearing on dairy market sentiment.

Sharp drop

The sharp drop in French milk production so far this year is down to a number of reasons, including cold weather in the early weeks of 2021, higher feed prices and poor silage quality from last season.

Eurostat has yet to publish January supply figures for Germany, but it's understood milk production is also off to a slow start in Europe’s largest milk-producing country.