FUW welcomes 'Dairy Farmers' together initiative
Farmers’ Union of Wales members and officials joined dairy farmers from across the UK at a rally in Scotland yesterday to support the concept of a Dairy Farmers’ Together umbrella group.
The proposed united UK dairy farmers’ association, which will allow collaboration and communication between producer groups, was one of the key elements put forward at the rally in Lanark.
The Dairy Farmers’ Together association would use partners within the UK to develop collaboration between individual dairy farmers and groups of producers in a bid to achieve a fair milk price and improve the effectiveness of existing producer representative bodies.
Dairy Farmers’ Together would be open to all producers whether co-operatives, producer organisations, aligned or non-aligned.
Following the rally a large number of milk producers, including FUW’s milk and dairy produce committee chairman Dei Davies and vice president Brian Walters, signed a Commitment for Change form to demonstrate their support for the association.
Mr Davies said: “Processors and retailers have now been challenged and it is time that they recognised that the producer is the backbone of the dairy supply chain.
"It is time the producer received their fair share.
“The concept of Dairy Farmers’ Together represents a united industry voice and, in large numbers, the tools represented by this association would be useful and give real power in negotiations,” added Mr Davies.
“Dairy Farmers Together should produce a sense of solidarity that will help underpin milk price."
NFU Scotland milk committee vice chairman Rory Christie said the new association will empower the individual to send a collective message to improve price negotiations because critical mass is power.
“Although this is not a quick fix, Dairy Farmers’ Together aims to create useable tools to reduce the current unfairness in the dairy supply chain.
“The association would bring the best minds in the UK together to work as a collaborative high level group to provide solutions to improve the prosperity of the UK dairy sector,” added Mr Christie.
The Scottish Government have committed £100,000 to aid the development of the association and the FUW will be writing to deputy agriculture minister Alun Davies asking that Wales makes the same commitment.
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