UK Dairy Imports

Published 16 April 18

In February 2018:

  • UK imports of Cheddar totalled 6,096 tonnes, 1,400 tonnes (29%) more than the same month last year.
  • Speciality cheese imports reached 28,683 tonnes in the month, an inecrease of 1,356 tonnes (5%) compared with the same month last year.
  • Butter imports rose 4% year on year to 3,931 tonnes in January.
UK dairy imports (tonnes)
  Cheddar cheese Speciality cheese Butter
Feb-17 4,696 27,328 3,776
Feb-18 6,096 28,683 3,931
% Change 29.8% 5.0% 4.1%
Jan-Feb 17 8,730 56,367 7,357
Jan-Feb 18 11,142 57,803 7,585
% Change 27.6% 2.5% 3.1%


Source: HMRC

Note: All data subject to retrospective changes. There may be marginal differences in percentages due to rounding


Cumulative imports: January-February 2018

  • Cumulative imports of Cheddar for Jan-Feb 2018 stood at 11,142 tonnes, an increase of 2,411 tonnes (28%) from the previous year. The increase was entirely due to increased imports from the EU, as only a negligible amount of cheddar was imported from outside the EU in these first two months.
  • Overall, cumulative imports of speciality cheese were up by 1,435 tonnes (3%) compared to the same period last year. EU sources accounted for most of the increase, particularly from France, Germany, the Netherlands and Denmark. However, the increased volumes from these sources were offset against a 65% drop in imports from the Irish Republic, amounting to 6,636 tonnes over Jan-Feb 2018.  Higher volumes of unripened fresh cheeses made up the bulk of the growth in speciality cheese imports, although there was a drop in imports of processed and grated and powdered cheese products.
  • Cumulative butter imports also increased, up 7,585 tonnes (3%) compared to volumes imported in Jan-Feb 2017. Imports originating from Ireland, Denmark and Belgium rose by 966 tonnes from last year, although there was a drop of 439 tonnes arriving from France, Germany and the Netherlands combined. Across the EU member states, there was a net increase of 529 tonnes of butter imported in Jan-Feb 2018. However there was no butter imported from outside the EU in the first two months of 2018, compared to 301 tonnes in 2017, nearly all of which was from NZ.

UK Dairy Imports

Source: PTF/HMRC

  Data from Jan-14 onwards sourced from HMRC, data from Jan-17 has been revised.