Q1 cheese exports up 20%

Published 23 May 18

More than 47k tonnes of cheese were exported by the UK in the first quarter of 2018, up just over 20% on Q1 2017. Within this, cheddar exports were up 26%, territorial exports were similar to Q1 2017, and total exports of all other cheeses were up 18%.

In terms of destination, the main source of export growth has been from the EU. Among the Member States, volumes shifted away from Poland and the Netherlands and towards Ireland, Germany, Denmark and Spain. Looking back over the past year it can be seen that those EU countries with the most year-on-year growth have been growing since Q2 2017. Additionally, exports to France had also been growing through 2017, but then fell back in Q1 2018.  

UK cheese exports

Although export volumes have been growing, the impact this has had on export value has been dampened by a decrease in average prices. Rising prices through the second half of 2017 bumped up export value, but the average price has since dropped back to below Q1 2017 at an EU and a total exports level. Nevertheless, total cheese export value was over £160m in Q1 2018, 12% more than Q1 2017.