Shoppers reassured of ‘fair’ milk price for farmers

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A new logo is being added to all cartons of fresh milk sold in Britain’s largest supermarket chain in order to guarantee shoppers that the farmers who produce it receive a fair price at the farm gate.

Tesco’s ‘Fair For Farmers Guarantee’ highlights how all its milk is 100 per cent British, is sourced from high-welfare animals and sees dairy farmers paid more than the cost of production.

The country’s dairy farming industry is suffering from a sustained period of low prices in a global market that is bloated by an oversupply of milk. It leaves the average UK farm gate milk price at 21.59 pence per litre (ppl), according to AHDB Dairy.

But Tesco said that its dairy farmers are currently paid 28.69 ppl. Its 600 farmers who supply fresh milk are members of the Tesco Sustainable Dairy Group (TSDG), which was set up in 2007 “to ensure farmers benefit from a price which is above the cost of production”.

Matt Simister, Tesco’s commercial director for fresh food, said: “When customers buy our milk they want to know our farmers are fairly treated and their cows are well cared for, so we’ve introduced the Fair For Farmers Guarantee on all our milk to give them peace of mind that they’re supporting British farmers with every pint of milk they buy.”

Sian Davies, chief dairy adviser at the National Farmers’ Union (NFU), said: “We are pleased that Tesco is looking at new ways to portray the TSDG message to British consumers and we hope that shoppers understand the logic behind it. The NFU would encourage others to engage with the general public in promoting what they are doing to support British dairy farming.”