Farmers Blockade Milk Plants Over Price Cut
Hundreds of dairy farmers have blockaded three processing plants in a protest at the price they are paid for their milk.
Supporters of Farmers For Action†used tractors to block a Robert Wiseman Dairy plant near Bridgwater in Somerset.
Other farmers gathered outside an Arla plant in Ashby-de-la-Zouch, Leicestershire, and another plant in Leeds.
Dairy farmers are angry about cuts of up to 2p a litre in the amount they receive from major milk processors. Many fear the shortfall will force them out of business.
The action is the latest in a series of protests by farmers who are angry that they could be paid less for their milk than the cost of producing it.
David Handley, chairman of FFA, warned that more blockades could take place.
Speaking from the blockade near Bridgwater, Mr Handley said that, if the financial situation for farmers continued, they could be forced to make the "ultimate sacrifice" and cut off the milk supply at source, keeping it on the farms.
"These people have got greedy, and they have squeezed us and squeezed us to the point we have got to. We have got to fight for the industry because if we don't the industry is going to go," Mr Handley said.
He said there were around 550 farmers and 120 tractors between the Bridgwater plant and a nearby Morrisons supermarket distribution centre.
James Small, 36, a livestock farmer on the Mendip Hills in Somerset, said he supported his dairy colleagues at the protest near Bridgwater.
"There are an awful lot of young people, who obviously want to have a future in dairy and farming in general, and they're voicing their concerns about whether there will be a future given the current crisis.†The sense of frustration and anger is palpable among the people here - they all feel a huge injustice about it all," he said.
Robert Wiseman Dairies said: "We fully understand the strength of feeling among dairy producers and continue to engage with those with an interest in the dairy supply chain.
"It is important to stress we are not in a position to fund a milk price at the level it was prior to the global collapse in the value of cream. It is our hope that the market for liquid milk and bulk cream which is at the core of this issue will quickly find a balance which will allow us to return improved prices to farmers."
Celebrity chefs Jamie Oliver and Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall have stepped into the debate and urged the public to boycott some supermarkets.
what do you think?
Good luck to the farmer's. Whilst im guilty of buying the cheap milk I font have any issues with it being raised in price. I just know that.if it was the farmers probably still wouldn't benefit.
Good luck to the farmers Morrisons reduced their milk to 98p x 4pints that an insult to the farmers who make a loss on every litre.I don`t mind paying more if it goes to the farmers not the greedy Milk processors and super markets.
Windows Live User
Soon the processors will have no milk (Then no profit) to process Time the govt stepped in and made sure the farmers got a fair deal and the processors/ supermarket reduced profit line. As long as it not humped onto the end user as usally happens
Import and be damned, anything to keep the foreigners happy
Thumbs up to you! I smell your irony!
While I like the benefit of cheap milk we have been paying 49p a litre for skimmed milk for as long as I can remember. I am happy to pay a little more if the increase goes to the farmers but how likely is that. I object to pouring more money into greedy supermarkets pockets who use all sorts of dodges to con people into thinking they are getting bargains. Often where the price remains the same the quantity in the packet has been reduced, Actually a price rise
Windows Live User
Personally I dont like paying more. As long as the supermarkets are canning billions in profit, then it should be them that carries any increase. All the same give the farmers a fair deal before it is to late and they are gone
How can a cut be justified with increases in fuel prices which affects feed prces etc..If they say no where are they going to get cheaper milk? I would pay more.
A farmer friend tells me farmers stand to make a loss of 11p per 2xlitres while the supermarkets profit will increase to 34p per 2xlitres. Supermarkets destroyed the milk delivered to your door tradition and now they are out to destroy the dairy farmers. Why? Because then they can import cheap milk and further increase their margins. Supermarkets portray themselves as our much loved friends but nothing could be further from the truth. They are very detrimental to our economy, our health and our way of life.
Local shops here stock local dairy products, thank goodness, and people buy it, too. Last night the news featured a farmer who was getting 24.5p per litre of milk sold in 1994. Today, the proposals mean that he will be getting 22p. WHAT?! Because of what it costs him to produce the milk, he makes a loss of £36,000 a year. While I have no idea how he affords that, or why he bothers, it must be true. Outrageous.
And, while I'm at it, this has been going on for years. My dad, years ago when we were kids, only got 12p for every fleece sheared. This was then negated by costs of paying shearers and delivering it, etc. Sheep farming became a joke, with some lambs going for £30 but individual joints of said lamb turning up on supermarket shelves for as much. One day, Dad sold hundreds of the woolly blighters more or less on a whim and has never looked back. It's a shame really.