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Germany, the largest cheese producer in the EU in 2018; Lithuania produces more cheese than Romania


In 2018, 156.8 million tonnes of whole milk was processed in the European Union (EU). EU dairies produced 10.3 million tonnes of cheese, as well as 2.4 million tonnes of butter and other fat products (“yellow products”). Together, the production of cheese and butter used two-thirds (67%) of all the whole milk available to dairies.

The EU also produced 30.1 million tonnes of drinking milk (around 17 million tonnes of which was from whole milk and 13 million tonnes from skimmed milk) and 3.0 million tonnes of dairy powders. Drinking milk accounted for about one-tenth (11 %) of all the whole milk used by dairies in 2018.

Germany produced the most cheese among EU Member States (2.2 million tonnes, 22% of the EU total), followed by France (a provisional 1.9 million tonnes, 19% of the EU total) and Italy (1.3 million tonnes, 13% of the EU total). The United Kingdom produced 6.8 million tonnes of drinking milk in 2018, accounting for a little over one fifth (23%) of the EU total.

Romania is somewhere in the middle of the ranking, with a production of 96,000 tons, being outpaced by smaller countries such as Lithuania (101,000 tons), the Czech Republic (130,000 tons), Austria (202,000 tons) or Greece (219,000 tons) ,