Ireland ranks number one in the EU in terms of the competitiveness of Irish dairy, due to greater efficiency at farm level since the removal of milk quotas, a new study by Teagasc has found.

Total costs of production in Ireland, including depreciation and opportunity cost on land and family labour, is the lowest in the EU on a kilo of milk solids basis.

The study also looked at the competitiveness of Irish dairy products on the world market in comparison to other EU exporters.

Dairy products

It found that butter and milk powder produced in Ireland had the highest comparative advantage, which has increased since quotas were abolished.

However, the study also found that Ireland’s competitiveness in the global cheese market has declined since quotas were abolished.

Total costs of production at farm level have declined in most EU states since quotas were abolished, but the decline has been greatest in Ireland.