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Top 10 Milk Export Countries in the World

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From a continent perspective, Europe generated over half (53%) of global milk exports. Led by New Zealand, countries in the continent of Oceania placed second at 22.6%.

Asia was responsible for 6.7% of worldwide exported milk, followed by North American milk exporters at 6.7% and Latin America (excluding Mexico) at 5.2%. Less than one percent (0.8%) of global milk exports originate from Africa.

There are two major product classifications used for the international trade of milk. The 4-digit Harmonized Tariff System code prefix is 0401 for milk and cream that is not concentrated nor containing added sugar or other sweetening matter. For milk and cream that does contain concentrated or containing added sugar or other sweetening matter, the 4-digit code is 0402.

Sweetened milk under tariff code 0402 amounted to $15.8 billion (68.3% of all exported milk) while unsweetened milk under 0401 was evaluated at $7.3 billion (31.7%).

Milk Exports by Country

Countries

Below are the 15 countries that exported the highest dollar value worth of milk during 2016:

  1. New Zealand: US$4.4 billion (18.9% of total milk exports)
  2. Germany: $2.6 billion (11%)
  3. Netherlands: $1.9 billion (8.1%)
  4. France: $1.5 billion (6.5%)
  5. United States: $1.4 billion (6.1%)
  6. Belgium: $1.2 billion (5.2%)
  7. Australia: $852 million (3.7%)
  8. Belarus: $637.6 million (2.8%)
  9. United Kingdom: $569.1 million (2.5%)
  10. Saudi Arabia: $556.3 million (2.4%)
  11. United Arab Emirates: $523 million (2.3%)
  12. Poland: $504.5 million (2.2%)
  13. Hong Kong: $499.1 million (2.2%)
  14. Denmark: $451.2 million (2%)
  15. Austria: $373.5 million (1.6%)

The listed 15 countries shipped over three-quarters (77.3%) of global milk exports in 2016 by value.

Among the above countries, three grew the value of their milk exports since 2012: Hong Kong (up 308.8%), United Arab Emirates (up 69.2%) and Saudi Arabia (up 42.3%).

Those countries that posted declines in their exported milk sales were led by: Denmark (down -28.3%), Belgium (down -24.5%), New Zealand (down -23.5%), Australia (down -23.2%) and France (down -22.8%).

Advantages

The following countries posted the highest positive net exports of milk during 2016. Investopedia defines net exports as the value of a country’s total exports minus the value of its total imports. Thus, the statistics below present the surplus between the value of each country’s exported milk and its import purchases for that same commodity.

  1. New Zealand: US$4.3 billion (net export surplus down -23.5% since 2012)
  2. Germany: $2.2 billion (up 47.7%)
  3. Netherlands: $1.4 billion (up 44.2%)
  4. United States: $1.3 billion (down -4.6%)
  5. France: $1.2 billion (up 19.7%)
  6. Belgium: $845.7 million (up 113.2%)
  7. Australia: $741 million (down -29.4%)
  8. Belarus: $635.2 million (down -15.7%)
  9. Denmark: $430.7 million (down -20.8%)
  10. Uruguay: $370.1 million (up 2.6%)
  11. United Kingdom: $360.1 million (up 81%)
  12. Argentina: $349.7 million (down -56.9%)
  13. Czech Republic: $347.4 million (down -7.5%)
  14. Austria: $288.9 million (down -5.9%)
  15. Poland: $253.4 million (down -22%)

New Zealand has the highest surplus in the international trade of milk. In turn, this positive cashflow confirms New Zealand’s strong competitive advantage for this specific product category.

Opportunities

The following countries posted the highest negative net exports of milk during 2016. Investopedia defines net exports as the value of a country’s total exports minus the value of its total imports. Thus, the statistics below present the deficit between the value of each country’s imported milk purchases and its exports for that same commodity.

  1. China: -US$1.5 billion (net export deficit down -25.9% since 2012)
  2. Hong Kong: -$1 billion (down -2.2%)
  3. Algeria: -$826.3 million (down -24.4%)
  4. Mexico: -$534.8 million (down -29.3%)
  5. Russia: -$439.6 million (down -19.8%)
  6. Indonesia: -$435.4 million (down -34.6%)
  7. Philippines: -$346.2 million (down -12%)
  8. Vietnam: -$300.3 million (up 8.8%)
  9. Macao: -$281.7 million (up 968.5%)
  10. Brazil: -$275.6 million (down -12%)
  11. Nigeria: -$233.7 million (down -132.1%)
  12. Sri Lanka: -$229.1 million (down -21.1%)
  13. Bangladesh: -$224.5 million (down -11.4%)
  14. Egypt: -$216.1 million (down -28.6%)
  15. Venezuela: -$215.3 million (down -77%)

China incurred the highest deficit in the international trade of milk. In turn, this negative cashflow highlights strong Chinese competitive disadvantages for this specific product category but also signals opportunities for milk-supplying countries that help satisfy the powerful consumer demand from the highly populous People’s Republic.

Companies

Milk Exporting Companies

Below are global milk-processing companies that represent established players engaged in the international silk trade. Many of these business entities are cooperatives. The home country for each company is shown in parenthesis.

  • Fonterra Co-operative Group Limited (New Zealand)
  • Zott (Germany)
  • FrieslandCampina (Netherlands)
  • Lactalis (France)
  • Borden Milk Products (United States)
  • Canberra Milk (Australia)
  • First Milk (United Kingdom)
  • Almarai (Saudi Arabia)
  • Arla Foods (Denmark)
  • La Serenísima (Argentina)

Searchable List of Milk Exporting Countries

You can change the presentation order by clicking the triangle icon at the top of the columns.

Rank Exporter 2016 Milk Exports % World Total
1. New Zealand US$4.4 billion 18.9%
2. Germany $2.6 billion 11%
3. Netherlands $1.9 billion 8.1%
4. France $1.5 billion 6.5%
5. United States $1.4 billion 6.1%
6. Belgium $1.2 billion 5.2%
7. Australia $852 million 3.7%
8. Belarus $637.6 million 2.8%
9. United Kingdom $569.1 million 2.5%
10. Saudi Arabia $556.3 million 2.4%
11. United Arab Emirates $523 million 2.3%
12. Poland $504.5 million 2.2%
13. Hong Kong $499.1 million 2.2%
14. Denmark $451.2 million 2%
15. Austria $373.5 million 1.6%
16. Uruguay $372.6 million 1.6%
17. Czech Republic $364.4 million 1.6%
18. Argentina $352.5 million 1.5%
19. Spain $320.7 million 1.4%
20. Ireland $312.4 million 1.4%
21. Malaysia $224.7 million 1%
22. Sweden $196.7 million 0.9%
23. Oman $178.9 million 0.8%
24. Lithuania $166.9 million 0.7%
25. Brazil $141.7 million 0.6%
26. Singapore $136.6 million 0.6%
27. Portugal $132.3 million 0.6%
28. Luxembourg $118.6 million 0.5%
29. Hungary $116.1 million 0.5%
30. Kuwait $115.5 million 0.5%
31. Italy $113.2 million 0.5%
32. Slovenia $113.1 million 0.5%
33. Finland $105.2 million 0.5%
34. Turkey $104.9 million 0.5%
35. Peru $101 million 0.4%
36. South Africa $97 million 0.4%
37. Slovakia $96.8 million 0.4%
38. Latvia $89.3 million 0.4%
39. Costa Rica $85.6 million 0.4%
40. Philippines $84.4 million 0.4%
41. Mexico $82.5 million 0.4%
42. Thailand $78.3 million 0.3%
43. Chile $63.2 million 0.3%
44. India $60.1 million 0.3%
45. Estonia $58.6 million 0.3%
46. Russian Federation $57.7 million 0.2%
47. Canada $50.3 million 0.2%
48. Switzerland $50.2 million 0.2%
49. Ukraine $47.2 million 0.2%
50.
China
$41.4 million
0.2%
51. Romania $36.8 million 0.2%
52. Nicaragua $34.3 million 0.1%
53. Bolivia $28.7 million 0.1%
54. Bosnia/Herzegovina $25.6 million 0.1%
55. Egypt $25 million 0.1%
56. South Korea $24.5 million 0.1%
57. Indonesia $23.9 million 0.1%
58. Togo $17.3 million 0.1%
59. Japan $12.6 million 0.1%
60. Greece $12 million 0.1%
61. Croatia $10.8 million 0.05%
62. Serbia $10.6 million 0.05%
63. Viet Nam $10.2 million 0.04%
64. Jordan $9.8 million 0.04%
65. Bulgaria $9.4 million 0.04%
66. Panama $8 million 0.03%
67. Gambia $8 million 0.03%
68. Honduras $7.6 million 0.03%
69. Senegal $7.4 million 0.03%
70. Kazakhstan $6.3 million 0.03%
71. Kyrgyzstan $6.2 million 0.03%
72. Ghana $5.5 million 0.02%
73. Cameroon $4.5 million 0.02%
74. Norway $3.8 million 0.02%
75. Paraguay $3.8 million 0.02%
76. Macao $3.4 million 0.01%
77. Morocco $3.3 million 0.01%
78. Yemen $3.2 million 0.01%
79. Macedonia $3 million 0.01%
80. Iran $2.8 million 0.01%
81. Cyprus $2.8 million 0.01%
82. Bahrain $2.8 million 0.01%
83. Rwanda $2.7 million 0.01%
84. Moldova $2.6 million 0.01%
85. Trinidad/Tobago $2.4 million 0.01%
86. Pakistan $2.4 million 0.01%
87. Mauritius $2.3 million 0.01%
88. Iceland $2.3 million 0.01%
89. Sri Lanka $1.8 million 0.01%
90. Uganda $1.8 million 0.01%
91. Taiwan $1.8 million 0.01%
92. Ecuador $1.7 million 0.01%
93. El Salvador $1.4 million 0.01%
94. Namibia $1.3 million 0.01%
95. Lebanon $1.3 million 0.01%
96. Brunei Darussalam $1.3 million 0.01%
97. Guatemala $1.3 million 0.01%
98. Niger $1.3 million 0.01%
99. Nigeria $930,000 0.004%
100.
Colombia
$816,000
0.004%
101. Fiji $796,000 0.003%
102. Bangladesh $784,000 0.003%
103. Azerbaijan $688,000 0.003%
104. Botswana $491,000 0.002%
105. Zambia $416,000 0.002%
106. Israel $375,000 0.002%
107. Dominican Republic $277,000 0.001%
108. Algeria $263,000 0.001%
109. Syria $229,000 0.001%
110. Qatar $211,000 0.001%
111. Côte d’Ivoire $210,000 0.001%
112. Netherlands Antilles $195,000 0.001%
113. Malawi $191,000 0.001%
114. Madagascar $186,000 0.001%
115. Mozambique $181,000 0.001%
116. Mali $180,000 0.001%
117. Zimbabwe $148,000 0.001%
118. Georgia $92,000 0.0004%
119. Kenya $92,000 0.0004%
120. Guyana $57,000 0.0002%
121. Benin $54,000 0.0002%
122. Lesotho $54,000 0.0002%
123. Iraq $52,000 0.0002%
124. Tunisia $46,000 0.0002%
125. Jamaica $45,000 0.0002%
126. Papua New Guinea $43,000 0.0002%
127. Malta $35,000 0.0002%
128. Northern Mariana Is $32,000 0.0001%
129. Uzbekistan $26,000 0.0001%
130. Swaziland $26,000 0.0001%
131. Cabo Verde $19,000 0.0001%
132. Tajikistan $16,000 0.0001%
133. Chad $15,000 0.0001%
134. St. Pierre/Miquelon $9,000 0.00004%
135. Saint Lucia $7,000 0.00003%
136. Timor-Leste $4,000 0.00002%
137. Democratic Rep. Congo $4,000 0.00002%
138. Ethiopia $3,000 0.00001%
139. Myanmar (Burma) $1,000 0.000004%
140. Armenia $1,000 0.000004%
141. Burkina Faso $1,000 0.000004%
Research Sources:

The World Factbook, Field Listing: Exports – Commodities, Central Intelligence Agency. Accessed on June 22, 2017

Trade Map, International Trade Centre. Accessed on June 22, 2017

Investopedia, Net Exports Definition. Accessed on June 22, 2017

Wikipedia, Category:Dairy products companies by country. Accessed on June 22, 2017

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