Dairy Crest tackles milk price row

SUPERMARKET milk supplier Dairy Crest today said it was working on plans to offset the impact of milk price cuts on the crisis-hit farming industry.

The group - behind well-known brands Cathedral City, Clover and Country Life - said measures would include the introduction of a new code of practice for milk supply contracts.

Dairy Crest is one of a number of milk producers that have slashed the price they pay farmers for milk after seeing the value of cream plummet this year.

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Farmers are warning the cuts will see them paid less than it costs to produce the milk amid concerns it will force many out of business.

Dairy Crest is appearing in front of MPs today to face questions on the crisis, alongside supermarket chain Asda and farmers’ representatives.

The group said its milk price cuts had “put pressure on our supplying farmers and we are working with them on plans to reduce the impact of these cuts”.

“These plans include the early adoption of a new code of practice in relation to our milk supply contracts,” it added.

Dairy Crest confirmed its dairy division was also continuing to suffer from difficult market conditions, which saw the group slump to a £10.1m loss in its last financial year.