UK Dairy Imports

Published 16 May 19

In March 2019:

  • UK imports of Cheddar totalled 14,655 tonnes, 2,865 tonnes (24%) more than the same month last year.
  • Speciality cheese imports reached 37,255 tonnes in the month, an increase of 3,843 tonnes (12%) compared with the same month last year.
  • Butter imports rose 32% on the year, totalling 6,070 tonnes for the month.
UK dairy imports (tonnes)
  Cheddar cheese Speciality cheese Butter
Mar-18 11,790 33,412 4,605
Mar-19 14,655 37,255 6,070
% Change 24.3% 11.5% 31.8%
Jan-Mar 18 23,078 91,139 12,015
Jan-Mar 19 34,634 99,361 17,642
% Change 50.1% 9.0% 46.8%

Source: HMRC

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


Cumulative imports: January-March 2019

  • Cumulative imports of Cheddar for the year so far stood at 34,634 tonnes, an increase of 11,556 tonnes (50%) from the previous year. The increase was due to higher imports from Ireland, with a total of 32,459 tonnes imported so far, 62% more than the same period in 2018.
  • Overall, cumulative imports of speciality cheese were up by 8,222 tonnes (9%) compared to the same period last year. This growth came from EU sources, particularly France, Ireland, Italy, and Cyprus. Higher volumes of unspecified cheeses made up the bulk of the growth in speciality cheese imports, as well as unripened fresh cheeses and grated and powdered cheeses. There was a drop in imports of Edam and Brie/Camembert.
  • Cumulative butter imports were 17,642 tonnes for the year so far, 47% higher than in 2018. Elevated imports from the Netherlands continued to February 2019, and even though March imports were lower, Jan-Mar imports were still 2788 tonnes - up 644% on the same period last year. German imports have picked up through the quarter, totalling 3,012 tonnes - 12 times more than the same period in 2018, which was particularly low. 

UK Dairy Imports

Source: PTF/HMRC

  Data from Jan-14 onwards sourced from HMRC, data from Jan-18 has been revised.