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Aldi and Morrisons will pay farmers more for milk

Aldi and Morrisons agree to pay more to farmers for their milk. Credit: PA

Supermarkets Aldi and Morrisons have agreed to pay farmers more for their milk following days of protests and negotiations.

Aldi will pay farmers 28p per litre from Monday, whilst Morrisons will pay 26p as well as creating their own "Morrisons Milk For Farmers" which 10p per litre will be paid.

Yesterday, Asda also agreed to up the price it paid to suppliers.

Farming unions have claimed milk is sold in supermarkets for less than it costs to produce, shortchanging the supplier by up to 10p per litre.

Farmers protest over supermarket milk prices

British milk farmers turned out today in a protest designed to beat the supermarkets at their own game by giving milk, that they say the supermarkets are selling too cheaply, away for free.

The protests have been going on for a number of days.

The National Farmers Union say the supermarkets don't have a sustainable model for what they charge the consumer for the milk, or what the farmers actually get back.

ITV News Correspondent Ben Chapman reports:

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National Farmers' Union: Milk is now cheaper than water

The president of the National Farmers' Union has said that the price of milk has been devalued to the extent that it is now "cheaper than water".

Speaking on BBC Radio 4's Today programme, he said:

This is only a symptom of what has happened in the milk industry over the last number of months ... There are very few dairy farmers making any money, most are haemorrhaging money at this present time, particularly those at 20p a litre ...

Dairy farming is seen as nearly iconic in the British countryside. We have lost 60 dairy producers in December alone ... We have halved the number of dairy farmers in the last 10 years.

– Meurig Raymond, president, nfu

First Milk delays payments to farmers amid price slump

Britain's largest dairy firm has delayed payments to farmers because of a slump in the global price of milk, its chairman has said.

Dairy farmers faced a year of unprecedented volatility in 2014, First Milks says Credit: Frank May/DPA/Press Association Images

First Milk, a co-operative owned by British farmers, said last year was a "year of volatility that has never been seen before" in the global dairy industry.

Its chairman, Conservative MP Sir Jim Paice, said it will delay today's payments to farmers by two weeks and all subsequent payments by a fortnight in order to put the business on a "stronger platform".

He added: "We are aware that hundreds of UK dairy farmers are unlikely to find a home for their milk this spring."

Read the full statement here

What the milk deal will mean for farmers

A deal has been struck in principle to end the stalemate over milk prices. The agreement means:

  • Firms buying milk, like big supermarkets, would give a "sensible" notice period when changing their prices
  • It means farmers would have enough time to opt out of any deals
  • Government officials say they could still bring in legislation at a later date if the code failed to work
  • But ministers warn they cannot dictate prices

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NFU: Action still needed to reverse price cuts

This agreement will give us the architecture we need to make sure that we don't end up with the same dysfunctional markets that are responsible for the dairy crisis we have today. The farming community is more united than ever before and the strength of feeling on this dairy issue is increasing and not decreasing. We will spend the rest of this month collectively throwing 100% of our efforts into reversing the price cuts from earlier this year and rescinding the ones on the horizon on August 1.

– Peter Kendall, President of the National Farming Union

Royal Welsh Show ambassador wants dairy industry protection

Eleri Evans, from Llangorse near Brecon, is representing this year's host county of Brecknock. Credit: ITV News Wales

The Royal Welsh Lady Ambassador has told ITV Wales more needs to be done to protect the dairy industry.

Eleri Evans will appear at the annual Royal Welsh Show, Wales' four-day premier agricultural event, which has become the centrepoint for the dispute over milk pricing.

Dairy farmers to have crunch talks with processors

Dairy farmers are due to have crunch talks with milk processors today as the stalemate over milk price cuts continues.

The two sides are set to meet at the Royal Welsh show in Powys after British farming ministers agreed to push them to back a new code of practice.

Last night more than 2,000 farmers took part in a third round of protests over the milk pricing crisis blockading plants near Bridgwater, Somerset, Droitwich Spa in Worcestershire and Market Drayton in Shropshire.

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