IFA National Liquid Milk Chairman John Finn has said the recent study by Mintel showing that more than three in five consumers on the island of Ireland believe farmers are not being fairly paid for their milk should encourage retailers and dairies to do what it takes to deliver the 40c/l annualised milk price liquid milk producers need to cover costs and pay themselves a modest wage.
John Finn added that IFA calculations, backed by work by Teagasc and FDC Accountants for IFA and Fresh Milk Producers, has shown that, just to achieve this break-even annualised price in 2016/17, farmers would need winter payments of up to 55c/l. Without changes to either last year’s payments and premiums or the base creamery milk price, farmers could end up falling 12c/l below the 40c/l break even. This would leave a farmer with a 200,000 litre contract a whopping €24,000 in the red.
“The Mintel study shows a large number of consumers on the island of Ireland would be prepared to pay 10c to 20c more for a two litre pack of milk if this went back to pay farmers more fairly. This suggests a level of understanding among consumers of the economic difficulties encountered by milk producers, which IFA has worked hard to convey to retailers and dairies, and which they must now take on board,” Mr Finn said.
“Dairies and retailers must now do what it takes to ensure liquid milk producers receive significantly increased premiums and payments over the next winter months to allow them cover their costs,” John Finn concluded.