EU food and drink production flat in Q4 2012

By Oliver Nieburg

- Last updated on GMT

EU food and drink industry production fell by 0.36%
EU food and drink industry production fell by 0.36%

Related tags Palm oil European union

Food and drink production in the EU remained flat in the fourth quarter of last year as some raw materials became costlier, according to data from FoodDrinkEurope.

The trade body’s economic bulletin for Q4 2012 found that EU food and drink industry production fell by 0.36% in Q4 of 2012 compared to the previous quarter.

The drop was less pronounced than levels observed outside the industry as the overall EU manufacturing industrial production index decreased 2.3%.

Sugar and milk powder price hike

Many raw material prices fell during the quarter including, cocoa, coffee, soybean, rape and palm oil. However, prices for sugar, milk powder and soft wheat increased.

EU white sugar prices rose 2% in Q4 of 2012, while prices in the U.S. decreased by 19.4% over the same period.

Fooddrinkeurope data

Industry trade bodies such as European Sugar Users (CIUS) have previously complained that the EU’s sugar production quotas are failing to meet demand and are keeping prices high.

Skimmed milk prices rose 11.8% in Q4 and whole milk prices by 9.6% compared to the previous quarter.

Price drops: palm oil and cocoa

However, some commodity eased in Q4. The largest price drop came in palm oil and soybeans, which declined in price by 18.5% and 10.1%, respectively compared to Q3.

Cocoa prices dropped 1.7% coffee by 9.6% over the same period.

Where is production growing?

Ireland was the EU member state that grew its food and drink production index more than any other nation. Production rose 7.31% in Ireland, while Estonia and Germany also exceeded positive growth rates of the previous quarter.

Bulgaria (-2.84%), Spain (-1.35%) and Finland (-0.75%) continued their negative production trend of the previous quarter.

Related topics Manufacturers