A tender procedure to release the first amounts (22 150 tonnes) of skimmed milk powder (SMP) out of public intervention stocks will open this Friday 25 November following today's vote by Member States on the Commission's proposal. The move reflects the encouraging signs of recovery being seen on the European milk market, with an increase of about 10% of the average price paid to producers in the last 3 months. Following a steady slow down, no more quantities of SMP have been put into public intervention since September 2016, even though this market measure remains open.
In order to test the market reaction, the quantity of product concerned by the tender procedure is limited, corresponding to only 6% of the total amount of 355 000 tonnes of SMP stored and taken off the markets since the opening of the measure in September 2014. Under this tender procedure, European operators will have until 13 December to submit their bids to national authorities.
Commenting on today's vote and decision, Commissioner Hogan said: "I am pleased to say that we are seeing something of a recovery in those hardest-hit markets, though we all know how fragile recovery can be in agricultural markets. Sustaining this recovery and working towards balance in the dairy market remains a priority. Reflecting the fragile nature of the recovery, the Commission will act with appropriate caution and the tender process will be under constant reassessment to prevent any unnecessary disruption." All the support measures put in place by the Commission to help dairy producers, like private storage and public intervention, remain in place.
For more information about the Milk market situation, see Milk Market Observatory.
See Implementing Regulation for the precise details.