Dr David Dobbin, Chairman of Dairy UK, has urged the UK Government to ‘lend its full weight’ to extend intervention so as to create outlets for dairy products this spring and summer in the face of the threat posed by a growing oversupply in EU dairy produce.
Dr Dobbin has written to Farming Minister George Eustice to raise concerns about the rapidly increasing amount of skimmed milk powder being submitted into intervention.
In his letter, Dr Dobbin said: “Despite depressed returns, the growth in global milk production, especially from Europe including the UK, is still rising and running well ahead of global demand. As a result, stocks of powder, butter and cheese are high and skimmed milk is being intervened across Europe, including the UK.”
Dr Dobbin said if the current milk supply production profile is maintained the UK dairy industry is facing a large surplus of milk over immediate demand this spring peak. He also set out in his letter a range of options on how Government could help ensure a smooth transition on intervention.
He said: “We are asking you to use the lobbying weight of the UK Government with the Commissioner to achieve a smooth transition regarding intervention at this difficult time. This would help avoid further distress at farmer and processor level and would be a positive way in which DEFRA can help the UK industry.”
Hunting out opportunities in the domestic and export markets
In a call to the entire UK dairy industry, Dairy UK Chairman said: “All of us in the UK dairy industry have to up our game and do what we can to hunt out opportunities in domestic and export markets to increase demand for our quality British dairy products.
“Dairy UK has recently published a new export strategy for the UK dairy industry highlighting the need for Government to work closely with the dairy industry to develop ways to promote UK dairy globally and generate more demand in international markets.
“We also call on the AHDB to lend their financial support to that of the industry and work collaboratively with us to promote dairy products. We’re delighted that they have taken some positive steps towards us and we are looking at how we can work together moving forward. It is time for the dairy industry to invest in developing demand for dairy products through promotion at home and abroad.”
By Victoria White
Source: New Food Magazine
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