Dairy markets have continued to stabilise after the turmoil of the early part of the coronavirus crisis. New figures show dairy products were a lockdown favourite.
With coffee shops closed, the UK drank 2.9 billion cups of tea and 1.7bn cups of coffee at home in the eight weeks to May, up 20% on last year according to data from Kantar for AHDB.
There was almost a 50% jump in retail cheese sales as people made lunches at home and cooked more. In the week of lockdown in late March, sales of butter rose by two-thirds as shoppers stocked up on essentials, including baking ingredients.
Overall dairy sales
Overall at-home dairy sales were 18.7% higher than last year in the 12 weeks to the middle of June, Kantar data showed.
AHDB and industry organisation Dairy UK said the industry’s £1 million Milk Your Moments campaign helped highlight and celebrate dairy products during lockdown, with people sharing recipes and occasions when they were drinking milk or eating dairy products.
The campaign was partly funded by the UK and devolved governments and also raised £100,000 for mental health charity Mind.
Those gains in home dairy consumption were partly made at the expense of out-of-home sales, with coffee shuts closing at the height of lockdown.
A survey of 211 coffee shops by website World Coffee Portal, found 80% worried for the future viability of their businesses and more than one-third believed it would take at least two years to get back to pre-Covid-19 trading levels.
Dairy prices have risen by about 1ppl from most dairies over the last month, with values ranging from 25ppl to 29ppl.
Defra calculated the average June farmgate price was 26.89ppl, a 0.8% up on the May figure, but 3.9% down on the 2019 figure, with production at 1.29bn litres.
That was nearly 100m litres lower than in May, but 3.5% more than June 2019.
The global dairy market has also been impacted by coronavirus, but production was still set to grow by 1.6% a year, according to estimates by the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organisation and think tank the OECD, driven by growth in developing countries.