IFA National Dairy Committee Chairman Tom Phelan said Lakeland and Glanbia holding the May milk price must be the signal that stops the slide and marks the beginning of improved returns for farmers.
He said the decision to hold the price was badly needed to minimise damage to farmers’ confidence as the drought was starting to bite.
“Other co-ops must at the very least hold their May milk price. However, farmers would legitimately expect better prices from now on, and will need them to support their rapidly eroding cash flow,” he said.
“European butter and SMP spot quotes have been rising steadily for seven weeks now by the equivalent of 5.6c/l. The most recent EU Milk Market Observatory average market quotes for the same products and over the same period has risen by the equivalent of 3 c/l,” he said
“Co-ops must prepare to increase farmgate prices before the end of peak,” he concluded.