Dairy cow numbers in countries of the European Union (EU-28) in 2018

The Federal Republic of Germany was the EU country with the largest herd of dairy cows in 2018. Dairy cows in the country numbered approximately 4.1 million. France had the second largest number of dairy cows with 3.55 million animals in 2018.

Dairy products

A range of products contain milk or are produced from milk, however liquid milk remains the dairy product with the largest production volume in the EU with an estimated 19.5 million metric tons of milk being produced in 2019. The output volume of cheese during the same year was estimated to be 6.4 million tons closely followed by fermented milk products with 6.1 million tons.

UK milk market

Production in the United Kingdom has been growing and most recently it amounted to 14.7 billion liters. In 2018 milk sold in in Great Britain for an average of 61 pence per liter in retail. Meanwhile, milk alternatives such as soymilk have been increasing in popularity and the amount of soymilk sold has been increasing for the past ten years in GB. In 2018, about 92 million liters were sold.

Dairy cow numbers in the European Union (EU-28) in 2018, by country*

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Release date

September 2019



Survey time period


Supplementary notes

* Dairy cow numbers refer to dairy female cattle aged two years or more with offspring.

** Data provided for these countries is provisional.

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