New Zealand Ministry Forecasts 5.7% Increase in 2011-12 Milk Production
New Zealand, the world’s largest dairy exporter, will increase milk production the next two seasons as strong demand from China and oil-exporting nations buoys prices and boost supply, according to the government
Production may surge 5.7 percent in the year ending May 31, 2012, the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry said in a report today. Output may gain 2.9 percent in the 2012-2013 season and 1.2 percent the following year, it said.
China’s dairy imports surged more than five-fold between 2008 and 2010 amid rising incomes and nutrition levels, sending whole milk powder to a record $4,958 a metric ton on March 1. Oil-exporting countries are likely to increase their dairy consumption as oil prices rise, according to the report.
“There’ll be increasingly strong demand for the kinds of fats and proteins that New Zealand produces,” Paul Stocks, deputy Director-General of the ministry, said on a conference call in Wellington. Demand will underpin high international prices and encourage higher milk production, he said.
High prices may encourage New Zealand farmers to switch to dairy from sheep, beef and arable farming, further boosting production, according to the report.
To contact the reporter for this story: Phoebe Sedgman in Wellington at email@example.com.