Government must back ailing dairy industry says MP

Ribble Valley MP Nigel Evans is backing dairy farmers' fight for a fairer deal from retailers
Ribble Valley MP Nigel Evans is backing dairy farmers' fight for a fairer deal from retailers

Ribble Valley MP Nigel Evans has contacted the Farming Minister George Eustice and spoken out in favour of the dairy industry, which has suffered a decline and the loss of 50% of dairy farms over the past decade and for the first time in living memory there are now less than 10,000 dairy farmers in the UK.

Mr Evans has proposed a new levy to be added to the price of milk, which would go directly to the producer rather than the retailer, and would ensure that price wars between supermarkets do not unfairly impact upon dairy farmers.

Speaking from Westminster, Mr Evans said: “Dairy farmers are the backbone of rural Britain and it is vital the Government does more to protect their industry from such low prices. Some supermarkets are now selling four pints of milk for 89p, almost as cheap as water. I am sure that consumers would be happy to support dairy farmers in the Ribble Valley and elsewhere by paying a fair price for milk, rather than fall victim to supermarket price wars as farmers are facing the incredibly difficult situation of falling milk prices whilst energy and feed costs are rising. The dairy industry cannot survive if this trend continues and that is why I have today contacted the Farming Minister George Eustice to propose a new levy on milk prices to help protect the interests of farming communities.”