Dairy industry strikes milk deal

PUBLISHED: 18:29 23 July 2012

Farm Minister Jim Paice had been chairing meetings between farmers and processors

Farm Minister Jim Paice had been chairing meetings between farmers and processors


Dairy farmers and food processors have struck a preliminary deal which should help end the bitter stalemate over milk prices.

The two sides met at the Royal Welsh Show to agree a ‘code of practice’ which the National Farmers’ Union (NFU) said offered “hope” for the future.

The deal follows protests in which some 2,500 farmers decried cuts to the price paid by processors for milk, which they claim are forcing them to the edge of bankruptcy.

Among processors that have reduced the amount they will pay is Dairy Crest, which is cutting the price by 1.65 pence per litre, following an earlier cut of 2p in May.

Others include Robert Wiseman Dairies and First Milk, cutting the price by 1.7 pence per litre and Arla Foods UK, which implemented a 2p cut.

However, the new code agreed yesterday aims to give farmers more freedom to leave processors who reduce the price of milk.

It stipulates that dairy farmers must receive at least 30 days’ notice of a price change and retrospective price adjustments are no longer acceptable.

Speaking after the deal was announced Mr Paice said: “I welcome the commitment all sides have shown to reaching an agreement. The government will continue to work with all parts of the industry to secure its long-term future.”

Finer details will be finalised by the end of August. See tomorrow’s paper for the full story.


  • I really can't understand why anyone drinks cows milk as it's mean't for calves and not human beings. For goodness sake do some research and you will realise what rubbish product it is and totally unsuitable for humans. But of course that's up to you to wise up.

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    Monday, July 23, 2012

  • Good old EDP, knows where their bread is buttered with the farmers. If this was others striking so close to the Olympics there wouldn't be such sympathetic coverage.

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    Monday, July 23, 2012

  • milk should be free--farmers are millionaires so i don't "feel their pain".

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    Monday, July 23, 2012

  • A bit of a generalisation there bookwork! I'm sure there are plenty of millionaire farmers - Norfolk's barley barons and country estate owners for example - but there are also plenty of small or tenant farmers that struggle to make ends meet. Dairy farming has taken a hammering over the years. The small dairy herd down the road from me closed last year because it became unprofitable. Mind you, the farmer still managed to send all of his kids to public school. Maybe you do have point after all... Anyway. the one positive outcome of the milk price crisis is that England's dairy farmers are working together at last. It's a shame its taken so long for them realise that if they work co-operatively they have a stronger voice and more influence. Maybe some of the more brighter ones should take a trip to New Zealand where dairy co-operatives are common-place.

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    Betty Swallocks

    Monday, July 23, 2012

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site


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