IRELAND - Irish dairy co-operative Ornua has removed its monthly Ornua milk levy from the start of May, in recognition of the continuing global milk price crisis.
The levy is worth 0.14 euro cents per litre (c/l), and contributes to marketing campaigns for dairy products. Ornua said it would consider reinstating the levy when the milk price returns to a level equivalent to 30.5c/l incl VAT.
In a statement, Ornua said: "Notwithstanding the levy’s important contribution to Ornua, it is hoped that the suspension will go some way towards supporting farming families at this difficult time. In 2016, it is estimated that the suspension will return nearly €6 million to Irish dairy farmers."
The Irish Farmers' Association (IFA) welcomed the move, but warned co-ops they also need to keep holding prices.
“While this gesture is important, it does not absolve co-ops of the necessity to continue supporting milk prices, and I urge all to hold their March milk price to avoid making what is already a critical situation on many heavily invested farms much worse,” IFA National Dairy Committee Chairman Sean O’Leary concluded.
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