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#DairyMarket - Public stocks of skimmed milk powder now empty

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At the last tender sale, the remaining 162 tonnes of skimmed milk powder out of a total, original amount of 380,000 tonnes in public stocks were sold, fully emptying as a result the total stocks bought and managed by the Commission.

Agriculture and Rural Development Commissioner Phil Hogan said: “Today's sale of the last remaining public stocks of skimmed milk powder closes a chapter. The disposal of the stock, without impacting on the price of skimmed milk powder, is a vindication of the Commission's patience and prudent management of the whole process since 2015. The results of the Commission's actions are higher prices and a stable market. Once again, the European Commission has shown its commitment and support to and solidarity with European farmers in times of crisis.

"It also illustrates the necessity and the efficiency of the Common Agricultural Policy's instruments. The right tools acted as a vital safety net during a time of significant market disturbance and their appropriate and timely deployment has helped to secure the viability of [tens/hundreds] of thousands of European dairy farmers.”

Following the dairy market crisis that hit EU producers with lower prices in 2015-2016, the European Commission bought from 2015 to 2017 a total of 380,000 tonnes of skimmed milk powder (SMP) through public intervention. The objective was to stabilize the market and support farmers' income. From the end of 2016, a process of monthly and later bi-monthly public tenders was opened by the Commission to carefully sell the products back into the market without disrupting it.

Two years and a half since the first public tender, the public stocks are now empty and the milk price has significantly increased from 26 cents per kilo in summer 2016 to 34 cents per kilo in May 2019. All details of the tender process are fully documented online in the Milk Market Observatory portal.

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