Economics and social

Irish Dairy Industry Economic & Social Snapshot

  • The dairy industry is a key component of the economy on island of Ireland providing €16 billion of economic value and around 85,000 jobs, with much needed employment focused in rural areas.
  • Over 11 billion litres of milk are supplied by over 20,000 family farms across the island of Ireland, the vast majority of of whom are owners of the primary business through the cooperative model.
  • Since abolition of quotas, Ireland is a global leader in the development of a value-add, environmentally sustainable dairy industry based on our extensive grass-based dairy system.
  • The quality of Irish produce is reflected in the fact that 3 of the world's major specialised nutrition companies have chosen to base key secondary processing sites in Ireland, providing over 3,000 jobs in 7 specialised nutrition plants who add further value to Ireland’s grass-based family farms.
  • 94% of Irish dairy product is exported, with €6.5 billion worth of exports annually to over 140 international markets, making it Ireland’s largest & most successful native industry.

Sources: EY, Bord Bia, CSO, HMRC, DII