IFA National Dairy Chairman Tom Phelan said Glanbia had made a number of positive moves in the last week.Taking the first step to address the month-to-month milk price gap they had let develop with other purchasers; making a €20m advance credit package available to farmers to help them purchase necessary feed in these times of drought; and finally a Glanbia Plc joint investment with Leprino to process up to 45,000t of mozzarella cheese in Laois.
Mr Phelan said it was particularly vital that milk suppliers benefited from all those decisions.
“Glanbia have this month taken the first step in addressing the costly milk price gap they had left their suppliers to deal with in recent months. Not only did markets fully justify the price increases delivered, and would justify more over the next few months, it is clear that farmers are in desperate need of a cash flow boost to keep cows fed after freak weather events from winter to summer this year undermined both grazing and fodder production for 2018. In this respect, the €20m advance credit package to support feed and fertiliser purchases over the coming weeks will be welcomed by farmers,” he said.
“With regards to the Glanbia Plc/Leprino joint investment in Laois, it must do more for farmers than provide an outlet for larger volumes of milk. Farmers must be assured that the higher value returns will be shared fairly with them, as they will have been achieved largely based on leveraging farmers’ efforts on quality and sustainability through their adoption of SDAS. Glanbia cannot forget that, without farmers producing high quality milk, sometimes as right now in very challenging circumstances, there can be no returns from the market place for anyone,” he concluded.