IFA National Dairy Committee Chairman Tom Phelan led a delegation of Glanbia area County Dairy Chairmen to meet with Glanbia management. Up for discussion was the latest Glanbia Fixed Price Scheme, which is proving very contentious with farmers and which they have just a week to apply.
The scheme comes with a major sting in the tail: to be granted volumes at the guaranteed 31c/l incl VAT for the year, farmers must tick a box committing them to trade with Glanbia Ireland to the value of at least 5 cents on their full 2020 supply.
“We appreciated our request for a meeting with Glanbia management being facilitated on short notice. While Glanbia point out the scheme is voluntary, we have made it clear that farmers find the requirement to trade 5c/l with Glanbia on all milk coercive, and they are fearful that if they don’t reach that level, they simply will not get any volume,” Mr Phelan said.
“We in IFA have recognised and praised Glanbia’s innovation in providing farmers with the valuable income risk management instruments that are fixed milk price contracts. Glanbia have told us today that the majority of their suppliers already trade in excess of 5c/l with Glanbia. Inflexibility on an unnecessary detail of the scheme cannot damage what should be a positive relationship with their farmer members,” he said.
“Glanbia Ireland is already providing input trading incentives and loyalty schemes to encourage farmers to do business with them. Offering a good value service and competitively priced inputs should more than suffice to optimise their agribusiness trade,” he said.
“I urge Glanbia management, as was stated today, to take away our comments and reflect on them, and to apply flexibility on the trading requirement,” he concluded.