The European Community uses the milk quota system to control the production of milk and milk products within the European Union (EU). Quotas were introduced in 1984 because there was a surplus of milk production in the EU and it was decided that measures were required in order to reduce the cost to EC taxpayers of intervention in the market for dairy produce. The Common Agricultural Policy reform agreement of September 2003 provided for the extension of the quota system until 2015. The administration of the milk quota regime in the UK is carried out by the Rural Payments Agency.
Further information is also available on the Rural Payments Agency website
The quota system covers the marketing of all milk products, including liquid milk, butter, cheese, yoghurt and ice cream.