Imports of butter and cheese into the UK last year were still falling up to October, according to the latest Provision Trade Federation. Cheddar imports in October itself were down 41% to 7,600 tonnes, making the 10 month total up to 74,000t or 21% less than in the same period of 1999. The main reason was lower volumes shipped from Ireland, Germany and New Zealand. Imports of speciality cheese in October were up 5% with France, Ireland and Germany the main shippers. Butter imports showed a minor recovery in October from 5,100t to 6,000t but the 10 month cumulative total was 5% lower at 76,000t than in the previous year. These lower imports have been matched by lower output of butter and cheese in the UK itself. Domestic butter output in the 10 months to October was 8% lower at 112,000t than in 1999 and total cheese output was nearly 11% down at 285,000t. Consumption of both butter and cheese is, however, rising and the reduction in imports and domestic make is reflected in lower stocks. {{PROVISIONS }}

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