Dairy Analytics

Forecasting the 2021/22 Fonterra Milk Price

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An infrequent mailing list with commentary on notable changes in our forecast.

Our current forecast

We think there is a 4-in-5 chance that the milk price will end up between

$/90 and $/10

but if you tried to pin us down, our best guess is


Help! What do the grey slash things mean?

When we give a forecast like $6.00/90, the grey number after the slash is the probability that the final Fonterra farmgate milk price will be greater than the blue dollar figure.

How our forecast has changed over time

The dark, solid line is our best guess. There is a 4-in-5 chance that the final milk price will end up in the shaded band.

Historical Fonterra forecasts

The historical Fonterra farmgate milk price forecasts since 2009.

GlobalDairyTrade auction prices

We use auction prices from GlobalDairyTrade to help forecast the milk price. The prices below are not identical to those published by GlobalDairyTrade; in auctions where the product was not sold, or the price was not published, we have imputed a value.

GlobalDairyTrade auction quantities

The 12 month rolling average of volume of product sold across the five categories we measure, as well as an unsmoothed trace of the quantity of all products sold. We don't find that the sales quantity has a predictive impact on the final price, but it is useful to demonstrate the strong seasonality in the market.

How did we do in the past?

Here are our forecasts from the 2020/21 season.

Here are our forecasts from the 2019/20 season.

Here are our forecasts from the 2018/19 season.

Here are our forecasts from the 2016/17 season.


Oscar Dowson has a PhD in Engineering Science from the University of Auckland. He is now develops optimization tools in Julia.

Got some comments? Send an email to o.dowson@gmail.com.

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