For farmers supplying over 1m litres annually, Glanbia Ireland has paid the leading price for milk supplied in February (see Table B).

The outlined prices are calculated for milk produced at three different qualities, as outlined in Table 1, and are based on alternate day collection.

For good-quality milk, which has a butterfat of 4.3% and 3.3% protein, the average price paid across all processors is 31.24p/l for February, a rise of 0.84p/l on the previous month.

Glanbia/Fivemiletown tops the table for the second successive month, with a price of 32.19p/l, up from 30.77p/l for January.

Strathroy holds the third spot, with 31.47p/l paid for good-quality milk. Glanbia Cheese rises two places to fourth, overtaking Lakeland and Aurivo in the process.

The Magheralin processor’s league position is helped by its 0.4p/l mozzarella bonus and 0.65p/l volume bonus.

Lakeland slips one place to fifth, while Aurivo slides to finish bottom of the table for good-quality milk.

Average quality

For average-quality milk, which is a much more accurate reflection of actual farmgate prices paid in NI, the league table is calculated at 4.16% butterfat and protein at 3.22%.

Across all processors, milk price averaged 30.33p/l, which is 0.61p/l higher than the equivalent average for the previous month.

It is also nearly 4p/l higher than what was paid last August, highlighting the extent to which international commodity markets have strengthened over the period.

Having finished second in January, Glanbia/Fivemiletown is back on the top of the table, with an alternate day price of 31.25p/l.

Strathroy slips two places to finish third on 30.82p/l, while Glanbia Cheese gains one place to finish fourth on 30.23p/l. All other processors paid under 30p/l at the outlined milk quality.

Rolling average prices

For the 12-month period ending February 2021, Lakeland Dairies continues to lead, with an average price of 28.8p/l over the period, just ahead of Glanbia/Fivemiletown in second.

However, on average-quality milk, those leading positions are reversed, with Glanbia/Fivemiletown above Lakeland. All positions are unchanged from the previous month. The spread in prices from top to bottom has narrowed slightly to 0.65p/l.

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