Latest from Brussels

ARC2020 Hosts Milk Crisis Debate

ARC2020’s next debate will be on the collapse in farm incomes, including in particular the milk price collapse. The causes, the consequences and most importantly the ways out of the current untenable situation will be explored in this debate over the coming weeks. […]

Latest from EU Member States

Milk Price Plummet Sees Farmers Seething

Farmer protests are spreading around Europe, with six roads blockaded in France, along with food trucks carrying imported produce turned back. The UK is now seeing protests congest motorways there too. The A50 road protest has focused more on milk than the French protests. The UK’s largest farmer organisation the National Farmers’ Union (NFU), have not backed these occurrences. A spark in the UK was a further milk price drop. Arla Foods amba, a co-operative owned by 3000 diary farmers, announced yet another cut in price paid, reducing the standard litre price to 23.01 pence per litre, or about 32 euro cents. Dairy farmers are growing increasingly frustrated by the milk price crises. All across the EU, prices are plummeting. In Ireland, the price is 10-12 cent lower than the same time in 2014, typically 28c per litre from some companies, with similar stories  from Germany, Lithuania and elsewhere on the Continent. “We should have learned our lesson by now, but we keep producing ever more milk, anticipating Russia and China to re-enter the market, whilst farm-gate milk prices […]

Latest from key partners

Milk price drops threaten viability of small to medium sized producers

While global issues inevitably influence milk price and dairy farmer viability, the end of the EU’s milk quota regime has made it especially challenging for small to medium sized dairy farmers to survive.  Milk prices are below 30 cents per litre in many countries. Small to medium sized producers inevitably suffer with such a sudden price drop. For some, increasing acreage and expanding production by going further into debt is the only solution. But this is only a solution for the few, while also having social, environmental and economic consequences for Europe, and rural Europe in particular. According to the Milk Market Observatory’s milk market bulletin from June 2015 “The weighted EU average farm gate milk price decreased in April 2015 by 0.8% to 31.3 c/kg, which is 18% lower than in April 2014 and 6% lower than the average of the last 5 years.” Developments in China and the Russian food embargo have also shaped the price drop. As the Western Daily Express reported on 10th June, this crisis has an impact on real people. Mark Oliver, […]