02 March 2015 | Online since 2003

Dairy coalition vows to keep up pressure on retailers

Pressure will be kept on retailers who don't pay dairy farmers a fair price, members of the dairy coalition announced today.

The coalition includes farming associations across the UK who have been protesting at the recent milk price cuts.

Farmers fear that price cuts will force them out of business and drastically reduce the dairy industry in the UK.

The group has warned that other processors and retailers would be put into the spotlight to commit to paying a fair price to farmers; one that at least covers their costs of production for milk.

Planned milk price cuts by all of the major dairy processors have now been rescinded before the August 1 deadline.

Farmer co-op, First Milk announced it has withdrawn plans to cut its milk price to liquid and balancing producers in August. This move was quickly followed by Dairy Crest announcing a two month stay of execution on its planned 1.65ppl price cut.

Robert Wiseman Dairy, now owned by German company Müller, also agreed to scrap its planned milk price cut.
However, NFU Cumbria’s dairy representative Cathryn Pritt of Thornbank Farms in Gosforth near Seascale is insistent that the rescinded price cuts are only the start.

“More work still needs to be done if we are to deliver a sustainable milk price across the whole industry, not just those supplying the liquid milk sector. We have seen an agreement reached on the framework for the Voluntary Code of Practice, which will underpin the contractual relationship between farmers and dairies, but it’s very early days and we need to see some meat being put onto the bones of these proposals" said Pritt.
“It’s imperative that Cumbria, one of the largest milk fields in the country with 711 dairy farms registered in 2010, has its say on how a fair milk price for all dairy farmers can be achieved.”
Speaking after the meeting today, NFU President Peter Kendall said there had been some great successes so far but the battle for a fair milk price was far from over.

He announced the next steps which include putting the meat on the bones for the heads of terms agreed on the contractual code of best practice between farmers and processors.
Farming leaders are also looking for some guarantees from retailers that payments for milk are not being balanced against payments for other dairy products such as cheese.
“Firstly, I want to say a huge thank you to farmers and the general public for the part they have played in supporting this work and for helping the coalition to achieve the impact it has, and in such a short time,” said Kendall.
“This is a unique coalition and the success we have seen to date in reversing those planned price cuts for August 1 is a sign of real strength and solidarity.
“However, there is still a long way to go and we need to build on the back of the successes from the past few weeks. We will be working hard to complete the contractual code of best practice as soon as possible and then we need to ensure those key elements are adopted.
“And rest assured, we will continue to name and shame retailers and other buyers of milk that do not pay their dairy farmers a price for milk that meets the cost of production.”
David Handley, from Farmers For Action, which has organised many demonstrations outside retailers and processors, said “Farmers for Action will continue putting pressure on the big four retailers to demonstrate they are doing all they can to ensure all dairy farmer suppliers are receiving a sustainable milk price.
“We will also be putting the spotlight on those retailers, including Iceland, Farm Foods and other food businesses which have refused to meet minimum costs of production for liquid milk.”
The Women’s Institute stated its support to putting pressure on retailers and processors to pay a fair price for milk.

Ruth Bond, chair of the NFWI, said “We are united with the coalition of farming organisations in calling for a fair price to British dairy farmers and we are issuing a challenge to the milk processors to visibly demonstrate how money is passing down the chain so that dairy farmers benefit from the recent price commitments of some retailers.
“We will be mobilising our membership to put pressure on retailers and processors to ensure a fair price is paid to, and received by, British dairy farmers.  The movement we have seen in recent weeks is very welcome but the problems with the supply chain are a very long way from being solved.”



No comments posted yet. Be the first to post a comment

To post comment without approval login or register

Display name

Please enter your name

Email (optional)

Please enter your comment

Post Comment

Your comment submitted successfully.Please wait for admin approval.

Some error on your process.Please try one more time.


25 February 2015
Laboratory Analyst, Stonehouse
This is an excellent opportunity for a Laboratory Analyst to work in Stonehouse, Gloucestershire, for the UK's number one dai...

19 February 2015
Six Sigma Engineer - Manufacturing
My Client is a leading Global manufacturer and offers an industrial belt programme and an integrated line of high performance...

24 February 2015
Sainsbury's Sampling Ambassador P109
Cosine are looking for Sainsbury's In-Store Sampling Ambassadors at the Badger Farm Store in Winchester. As the sampler you w...

26 February 2015
Development Manager - Food Industry
Understanding of human and/or monogastric farm animal nutrition. Development Manager - Food Manufacturing....

18 February 2015
Chef Manager (Unit Manager)
For example, nut, dairy or wheat allergies. We are currently recruiting for an experienced Chef Manager for one of our defenc...

Top stories you may have missed
2 February 2015 | Arable
Is EU membership damaging UK farming?

Is EU membership damaging UK farming?

Membership of the EU is damaging the British farming industry, according to...

29 January 2015 | Machinery and Equipment
Drones 'rapidly changing' agriculture

Drones 'rapidly changing' agriculture

BASIS has launched an accreditation for pilots of Unmanned Aerial Systems (...

23 January 2015 | Arable
UK wheat yields have potential to double

UK wheat yields have potential to double

UK wheat yields have theoretical potential to more than double over the nex...

23 January 2015 | Machinery and Equipment
Crowds flock to LAMMA 2015

Crowds flock to LAMMA 2015

Britain’s farmers flocked to Peterborough for the first day of LAMMA’15 to ...

22 January 2015 | Cattle
Don't blame supermarkets for milk crisis...

Don't blame supermarkets for milk crisis...

The crisis in the dairy industry is not the fault of supermarkets, accordin...

16 January 2015 | CLA
Families affected by HS2 face 'major wor...

Families affected by HS2 face 'major wor...

Transport Minister Baroness Kramer visited three rural businesses in Cheshi...

16 January 2015 | Machinery and Equipment
John Deere unveil new 6R tractor range

John Deere unveil new 6R tractor range

Spearheading the John Deere range of mid-size tractors from Mannheim, the n...

14 January 2015 | Animal Health
Monthly TB checks more effective than ba...

Monthly TB checks more effective than ba...

Regular testing for bovine TB could significantly reduce the number of infe...

12 January 2015 | News
Government regulations hampering UK agri...

Government regulations hampering UK agri...

Single-issue policy-making threatens to hamper, not help, the progress of U...

8 January 2015 | Cattle
2015: The year ahead for the beef market

2015: The year ahead for the beef market

2014 has been a “rocky old year” for the beef industry but better prices ar...