The EU dairy industry faces an unprecedented level of change. The anticipated removal of milk quotas and the move to a less restricted global trade environment will provide the industry with both opportunities and challenges. The primary challenge will be the need for the industry to deal with more volatile prices. Active management of the risks associated with these more volatile prices will help to place the industry in a more competitive position. However this will require the industry and policy makers to embrace a new set of tools. For example the US dairy industry has been much more active in the management of risk and lessons from their experience provide a valuable insight into which tools may be more appropriate in an EU context.