IFCN outlook 2019: Milk demand growing faster than supply

By Jim Cornall

- Last updated on GMT

Participants at the IFCN Supporter Conference 2018
Participants at the IFCN Supporter Conference 2018

Related tags Dairy Milk

The 16th IFCN Supporter Conference was held in Parma, Italy, September 11-13, with the IFCN presenting its data and outlook for the future dairy markets and milk price development.

After the last world milk price crisis in 2016, farm gate milk prices have stabilized at $35/100kg ECM (energy corrected milk). IFCN is predicting further milk price stabilization as demand is growing faster than supply.

This year, 120 participants from more than 80 companies focused on global dairy in the year 2030, and the question, “How will Big Data change dairy farming and the Supply Chain in the future?”

Big data

Big data in agriculture describes large sets of data that are generated on farms. Big data is becoming more important due to the increasing use of emerging technologies that create data, such as sensors and cameras. However, the IFCN said, simply storing data provides little value, noting data become advantageous when analyzed computationally to reveal patterns, trends, and associations.

IFCN milk price
IFCN World Milk Price Indicator ©IFCN

“We are entering in a new era, when technology application, precision and cost are getting to a situation where multiple sources of information and insights will be integrated, correlated and analyzed to solve complex problems in a timely manner,” ​said Ricardo Daura, global product line director for Digital Insights of conference host partner Cargill.

Presenting its long-term and short-term outlooks IFCN showed milk demand growth until 2030 is estimated at 304m tonnes ECM, which represents three time the current US production. To activate the production needed for this growth a world milk price of more than $40/100kg ECM is required.

Weather issues

IFCN said the dairy market in 2019 will be heavily impacted by the situations observed in 2018 like weather anomalies impacting feed production, dairy import demand and GDP growth per capita. A rapid slow-down of world milk supply growth reaching about 1.6% in August, compared to 3.1% in January, has supported the price stabilisation of $35/100kg ECM.

Torsten Hemme, managing director of IFCN, said, “The dairy demand will grow faster than the supply. IT solutions for big data will serve the dairy chain in order to identify the growth potentials of this sector. The 16th IFCN Supporter Conference created the opportunity for the dairy industry to meet new technologies ventures, leverage existing learnings and discover what digital disruption means to the industry and to each of the stakeholder along the dairy supply chain.” 


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