Farming union calls for fairer milk prices

PUBLISHED: 10:00 19 July 2016

The dairy operation at Puxton Park.

The dairy operation at Puxton Park.

A.Pattenden

Farmers should receive greater returns for their milk production, according to the National Farmers’ Union – and a North Somerset farmer believes supermarkets and processors are to blame for the issues in the market.

Alistair Mead, managing director of Puxton Park, said: “They have used the world market price as the problem to push milk prices down. That’s not really helpful when we have people needing fresh milk here. We should be worried about the British market.”

Mr Mead’s comments come after NFU South West chairman Andrew Branton called on processors to pay farmers more.

He said: “Processors must do everything possible to pass on any increased returns from the market to avoid a greater loss of production than absolutely necessary.

“We are now going into a period where production costs are beginning to rise for reasons outside farmers’ control.”

The NFU claims the number of milk farmers in Britain has halved over the past decade and Mr Mead said if trends continue, his family may have to consider cutting their milk production.

He revealed: “It’s really hard, as a farming family we’d never want to sell our milking herd but there’s only so much we can take.”


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