Compared to other EU countries, Denmark has experienced a relatively modest reduction in the number of dairy cows over the past decade.
According to preliminary figures from the Danish Dairy Board, the number of dairy cows has fallen by 17% - from 23.5 million in 1992 to 19.5 million in 2002 - within the EU. Over the same period, the number of Danish dairy cows declined by 13%, from 708,000 to 613,000, while in Sweden, the reduction is 21 %, from 526,000 to 417,000.
Of the large milk-producing EU countries, only France and Ireland have seen a more modest decline, i.e. 11%.
With 24%, Spain saw the largest fall.
In terms of annual milk yield per cow, Sweden continues to top the EU list with an average of 7,980 kg milk (2001 figures). Holland comes second with 7,415 kg and Denmark third with 7,300 kg. Greek cows have the lowest production, 3,800 kg.
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