Milk... Too cheap?

paultap

Well-Known Member
Having read the papers today it appears that more than 1000 farmers were not paid for their milk yesterday after a crash in prices plunged the industry into crisis. The biggest dairy co-operative First Milk delayed payments to its 1300 farmer members by a fortnight and cut the price it pays them. Campaigners have warned that this is the worst crisis the industry has ever seen with little sign of matters improving.

Global milk prices have plummeted in recent months meaning some british farmers now receive as little as 11.4p a pint (20p a litre) - well below the average 15.9p a pint (28p a litre) that it costs to produce. A year ago farmers were receiving around 19.2p a pint. Apparently the amount paid to farmers is now at its lowest level for eight years.

More than 60 dairy farmers are now going out of business every month according to the national Farmers union (NFU)

Farmers have condemned supermarkets for cutting prices even further, Asda, Aldi, lidl and Iceland are selling four pints for 89p whilst Tesco, Sainsbury and Waitrose are not far behind at £1 for four pints, farmers say that selling milk more cheaply than mineral water is devaluing the product.

The NFU say that retailers are fighting over market share and are driving farmers out of business and that if things continue as they are, there will be very few dairy farmers left in 6 months time.

Personally, I am very happy to support farmers and pay more for milk, 89p - £1 for four pints is almost ridiculously cheap!... If this trend continues we could end up importing milk as British dairy farmers go to the wall, if that happens one thing is certain, milk will then be a damn sight more expensive for us all.

This by the way, this is in total contrast to how I feel about the falling price of fuel which has always been ridiculously expensive in this country, though a massive part of the retail price is vastly inflated by the breathtakingly high tax (70% of the total price) slapped onto it by successively greedy British governments.... We now just need the Power companies to stop making excuses and pass on their savings instead of cashing in and boosting profits even further... This is unlikely to happen though so it looks like we will be left with the incompetent and toothless regulator to do something about it!
 
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AN DU RU FOX

Well-Known Member
i do bunnies on three dairy farms ones cut his herd to a third another gave up and changed to spuds the third is not sure weather to sell up alltogether its a shame as all three ive known do dairy full stop,doug
 

RED-DOT

Account Suspended
Subsidies pay farmers not to produce the volumes they could... A tenant farm near me gets hundreds of thousands for not producing what he could and the farm has just spent a fortune on an automated milking system.
What about hauliers going to the wall due to over regulation and fuel prices? I'm sorry but if there is no money in it get out of it.
 

woodmaster

Well-Known Member
I think it's a bit more complicated than RD may consider, although I do share some of his sentiment regarding subsidies for some industries and not others.
My sister and husband emigrated this last June as they just couldn't make a living on their small tenant farm. Let alone provide themselves with any sort of future pension.
It was difficult seeing my sister move to the other side of the world but they have got to have a chance of a decent life. They won't get that staying here with cost of production being higher than market price.
I don't know what the answer is for the small producers, the others will do ok as the big guys always do. I've helped build multi million pound dairies that make alot of money only to take them down again when there's more subsidy or profit in another job.
 

SimpleSimon

Well-Known Member
Subsidies pay farmers not to produce the volumes they could... A tenant farm near me gets hundreds of thousands for not producing what he could and the farm has just spent a fortune on an automated milking system.
What about hauliers going to the wall due to over regulation and fuel prices? I'm sorry but if there is no money in it get out of it.
:doh:
 

RED-DOT

Account Suspended
I shoot on a dairy farm and he done the right thing, he sells door to door and to local shops and has cut out the middle men who have tried to price him out to the point of an offer being rejected from Wiseman/Muller. Have you ever seen the prices at farmers markets?
I fear the devastation that will happen to rivers when farmers start flushing unviable milk down the drains which will happen if the price falls any lower.
 

JabaliHunter

Well-Known Member
I have every sympathy for dairy farmers. It is a tough business and they have a point about the product being 'devalued' by supermarkets. But at the end of the day, prices are being pushed lower because there is too much production. When dairy quotas end, it is highly likely that the big low-cost producers will produce more (and get contracts to supply more to dairies) and the smaller higher-cost producers will get squeezed even more. If consumers don't want to see that happen, then we need to pay more for milk produced and supplied in the way that we want it.
 

375 mag

Well-Known Member
Tough i say ! The farmers were keen enough to sign up to the supermarkets when the price was good, all the small dairies went out of business now they have no choice but to take what the supermarkets offer.
Farmers get paid millions to come out of milk production yet they still moan no other businesses get any help.
 

private fraser

Well-Known Member
If folk are happy to pay more for bottled water than a healthy home produced food while it's producers go out of business then the world truly has gone mad.
Milk will go the same way as poultry...it will come from abroad 'cos the great god cheaper rules ok.
The food processing industry in this country has gone down the pan and a lot of our food comes from other eec countries 'cos it's cheaper and being EEC we all know they obey all the rules and have the same standards as we do....right ?

Or maybe folk are happy to go down the "super dairy" route?...all for a few pennies a litre...

Plans for 'super dairy' toned down but concerns remain about pollution and cruelty - Telegraph
 

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andy

Well-Known Member
I shoot on a dairy farm and he done the right thing, he sells door to door and to local shops and has cut out the middle men who have tried to price him out to the point of an offer being rejected from Wiseman/Muller. Have you ever seen the prices at farmers markets?
I fear the devastation that will happen to rivers when farmers start flushing unviable milk down the drains which will happen if the price falls any lower.
Cant see many dairy farms investing in a milk processing plant to be able to sell their 1 million litres + milk per year door to door and to local shops, even if that was possible, which I doubt.

Cant see any farm flushing the milk into the river. Farmers, more than most, know what will happen if they are caught polluting the local environment. Anyway, once the milk is in the tank the money has been spent so the milk might as well be sold.

What I can see is more and more hard working dairy farmers going out of business unless they are paid enough money to allow them to make a living.
 

Briar

Well-Known Member
We got out of dairying 13 or so years ago to stave off the bank manager. We were doing well before BSE hit. After that dairy product export markets closed and we had to go to wiseman and take a drop of income of 8 pence a litre. On over 3million litres of quota - let you do the sums. Far more cost effective to stop dairying and do other things with the farm. It's realising what assets you have and using them more wisely where possible.
Atb
Briar

ps We were never paid to get out of dairying, if we hadn't the bank were going to pull the plug on the family farm. We in farming are now at the mercy of world wide forces, not just what happens within these shores. We have to produce what the consumer wants and have to become much more savvy in its marketing and haggling to get the best price. Not being dictated to by the supermarkets and their ilk.
 
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teyhan1

Well-Known Member
I live in Dorset where it is predominantly dairy farms.
This is what we have View attachment 51608
a patchwork of fields, woods and hedges.
When farms have to get bigger in order to make it pay then this is what you end up with
Polytunnels
View attachment 51609
Had it done on one of my farms. Fantastic farm with a continuous supply of deer (I shot everything as per landowners instructions).
Or maybe you prefer, Solar panels
View attachment 51610

I would pay more for my milk to protect the countryside
 
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6pointer

Account Suspended
They can always farm deer there seems to be a very high demand for it and the venison industry are keen to snap up all that can be produced.
 

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