Another Lancashire dairy farmer (a few of her herd, right) responds:
Not only was the average price UK dairy farmers received for their milk in 2015 lower than it was when the MMB was abolished 24 years ago, but it was 24% lower, and that was before farm gate prices last year suddenly plummeted by 1/3.
No producer ought to be losing vast sums of money for their hard effort when producers are mainly exploited by those who can.
The cost of basic utilities and inputs required to produce that milk has risen:
- water has increased by 137% in the same period since 1994 due to companies being able to automatically raise their prices annually by the rate of inflation
- similarly the price of electricity over that period increased by 207%
- Animal feed costs up 58%
- fertiliser up 114%
- and diesel 224%
and that is another reason that the number of dairy herds in the UK has collapsed – as input pricing is so much out of kilter with the farm gate price.