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Breakthrough as Major Retailers Move on Milk Price

23 July 2012

UK - Farmers organisations have welcomed the announcements by retailers Morrisons and Co-op that they will increase the price paid to dairy farmers.

The Co-operative has announced it will pay an increased premium of 2.57ppl with immediate effect, rising to 4.27ppl from 1 August. This will increase the Co-operative’s farmer milk price to 29ppl with immediate effect.

The move comes after mounting public pressure on retailers to deliver fair prices to farmers, culminating in demonstrations last weekend and protests last night outside three milk processing plants in Yorkshire, Leicestershire and Somerset.

National Farmers Union (NFU) Cymru Milk Board Chairman Aled Jones said: “We are really pleased by the positive response from The Co-operative in lifting its milk price significantly and moving towards a sustainable funding model for the future. The company’s recognition of the real difficulties being faced by British farmers this summer and commitment to support them through these difficult times is to be applauded.

NFU President Peter Kendall said: “We are really pleased by the positive response from The Co-operative in lifting its milk price significantly and moving towards a sustainable funding model for the future. The company’s recognition of the real difficulties being faced by British farmers this summer and commitment to support them through these difficult times is to be applauded.

Morrisons also announced that its price paid to dairy farmers will increase to 6p-a-litre, an additional 2p-a-litre premium for every litre of milk that it buys.

In a response to the bad weather affecting farmers, Morrisons will also give an additional support payment equivalent to 3p-a-litre.

These payments will last from August through to the end of October when they will be reviewed.

Richard Hodgson, Commercial Director of Morrisons said: "We recognise the exceptional pressure on farmers currently and continue to aim to support all farmers not just those that have dedicated contracts. The recent announcements by our processors will reduce the payment to farmers for the milk we sell and therefore we are announcing payments that negate their impact.”

Peter Kendall said: “We’re really pleased to see Morrisons response to the calls from a coalition of farming groups to reverse the announced price reductions and address the exceptional costs dairy farmers are now facing. We need a long-term solution that addresses the need for a sustainable raw milk supply into the future. It’s now critical that other retailers and major buyers of milk respond to the responsible steps Morrisons is taking.”



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