Speaking as the main co-ops have announced price cuts of up to 3 c/litre on April milk, IFA President John Bryan today (Wed) called on co-ops to support producers by holding May milk prices. He said, ”The disastrous weather in the month of May is costing dairy farmers dearly in lost production and increased costs. It is incumbent on co-ops to support producers in dealing with this very difficult situation by holding May milk prices.”
“Dairy farmers all around the country have had to bring back cows indoors at night, and are now concerned about the quality and quantity of first cut silage they will be able to harvest next month,” Mr Bryan said.
“2012 was already shaping up to be a high cost year for milk producers, and the recent bad weather will massively increase feed costs. Now, severe price cuts are hitting farmers at the peak time of year when they normally make the bulk of their annual income.”
“The cuts already imposed, combined with increased costs, will have a huge impact on their profitability. Holding the May price will help retain the confidence in the sector,” he said.
Mr Bryan stressed that the April 3c/l cut by the main co-ops would cost the average 260,000 litre milk producer around €1,800 on April and May milk alone, while those who have seen their prices come down by up to 4 c/l (Arrabawn) stand to lose up to €2,500 over that period.
“I urge co-ops, which over the last two years have been able to rebuild their balance sheets, to support hard pressed producers by holding their May milk price,” he concluded.