Milk

Australian milk production fell by 280 million litres, or 3%, to 9,200 million litres in 2012/13 - reflecting a difficult year for many dairy farmers; with unfavourable seasonal conditions, lower farmgate prices and higher input costs combining to challenge the profitability of farm businesses. Production conditions were demanding across many of the dairying regions in Australia. Large parts of south-eastern Australia experienced a wet winter, a dry spring and summer, followed by a late or inadequate autumn break earlier this year. Bushfires and floods also impacted on some regions at different times.

Milk production is concentrated in the temperate zone of Australia.  Australian milk production remains strongly seasonal in the key south-eastern dairying regions, reflecting the predominantly pasturebased nature of the industry. Milk production peaks in October, tapers off until late-summer, and then flattens out into the cooler winter months. The production of long shelf-life manufactured products in these parts of the country has enabled maximum milk utilisation within the seasonal cycle.

Milk production (million litres) by state

NSW VIC QLD SA WA TAS AUST
1979/80 907 3,151 508 329 222 315 5,432
1989/90 879 3,787 629 356 267 344 6,262
1999/00 1,395 6,870 848 713 412 609 10,847
2000/01 1,326 6,784 760 699 388 590 10,546
2001/02 1,343 7,405 744 715 393 671 11,271
2002/03 1,302 6,584 720 733 404 585 10,328
2003/04 1,271 6,434 674 703 404 590 10,076
2004/05 1,218 6,613 619 679 398 600 10,127
New Series*
2005/06 1,197 6,651 597 646 377 622 10,089
2006/07 1,105 6,297 537 655 350 642 9,583
2007/08 1,049 6,102 486 606 319 662 9,223
2008/09 1,065 6,135 513 628 340 708 9,388
2009/10 1,074 5,790 529 605 350 673 9,023
2010/11       1,046 5,912 485   572 362  722  9,100 
2011/12 1,086 6,213 485  570  338  788  9,480 
2012/13 (p) 1,071 6,039 458 536  337  760  9,200 

* From July 2005, data collection based on farm location
Source: Dairy Manufacturers