2 May 2018

Global dairy prices drop 1.1 percent

1:41 pm on 2 May 2018

Dairy prices have fallen in the latest global auction overnight.

Fonterra milk truck picking up Simon Mackle's milk.

Photo: RNZ / Rebekah Parsons-King

The average price was down 1.1 percent to $US3465 a tonne.

The result was comparable with the rise in the previous auction, which had been the first in two months.

The price of whole milk powder, a key indicator, was down 1.5 percent, however there were gains in the price of skim milk powder and cheese.

Rabobank dairy analyst Emma Higgins said the dip in the average price was not overly concerning.

"New Zealand product pricing tends to wane over the coming weeks as we move into our seasonal production hiatus and sentiment trails off as the focus shifts to the Northern Hemisphere," she said.

At the auction there were gains in the price of skim milk powder and cheese.

Cheddar was up 3.1 percent and the price of skim milk powder went up 3.6 percent.

Ms Higgins said that was likely due to lower than usual supply of fresh produce.

"Fresh produce generally is a little bit shy right now," she said.

"We're seeing, as I mentioned before, New Zealand's season tapering off but also the Northern Hemisphere is pretty slow out of the starting blocks, over there it's been really cold and their spring production is certianlly lagging behind ... so it's a combination of that," she said.

Ms Higgins expected Fonterra's forecast farmgate milk price to $6.55 a kilogram to stay put.

The volumes sold at the Gloabl Dairy Trade Auction were up more than 1 percent.

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