Dairy farmers remain under financial pressure from the rising cost of farm inputs despite record EU dairy commodity prices, according to data published by the European Commission.
Farmgate milk prices currently sit 40% higher than the five-year average milk price across all EU member states but farmer margins still “remain tight”, the short-term outlook for agri-food markets states.
No seasonal price relaxation is likely to take place over the summer, as demand looks set to remain high.
Dairy commodity prices have risen significantly since the beginning the year, with the report citing 25% and 30% higher prices being paid for cheese and butter respectively.
Year on year growth in wheat stocks of 92% is expected across the EU, which should facilitate higher exports.
Should this expectation materialise, it will “partially” compensate for reduced Ukrainian cereal exports and export restrictions in some areas, according to the Commission’s outlook.
Beef production is expected to contract slightly in 2022 across the EU due to high input costs.
A higher number of lighter slaughterings will lead to lower overall carcase output at the end of the year as feed costs will especially hit those finishing cattle, the report states.
In the Irish beef sector, dairy stock was recognised to be “replacing” suckler-bred stock.
Lamb prices are set to remain at their current record highs as demand within the EU is stable.
Continued high feed prices are expected to lead to additional slaughterings and lighter slaughter weights in intensive production systems.
High EU prices have, however, reduced the volume of sheepmeat exports.