Cow being milked© Tim Scrivener

A dairy farming family from Staffordshire is urging farmers to sign an online petition in order to trigger a debate about the dairy crisis in parliament.

Claire Collier of Harts Farm near Abbots Bromley says if she can get more than 100,000 signatures on her e-petition then the plight of the dairy sector will have to be discussed in the House of Commons.

More than 23,000 people have already added their names to the call for the government to set a minimum milk price payable to the farmer to “protect their business, livelihood and the future of the industry”.

“I know we might not be able to get a minimum price and it might be a long shot. However, if we get this into parliament that would be a help. Many farmers haven’t got a voice.”
Claire Collier

See also: Dairy farmers need defence from sharp milk price drops, say MPs

Mrs Collier, whose husband milks 200 cows and supplies Freshways, said her main aim was to raise awareness of the situation many farmers were facing.

She has also set up a Facebook page called “I am happy to pay more for milk” which has attracted another 21,000 followers.

“My husband is a dairy farmer and we have obviously seen how price cuts have affected us and our friends,” she said.

“I set up the petition because people were saying to me they wanted to pay more for milk and I wanted to gauge public support.

“I know we might not be able to get a minimum price and it might be a long shot. However, if we get this into parliament that would be a help. Many farmers haven’t got a voice.”

Mrs Collier said she also wanted to draw attention to the fact that dairy contracts were still unfair as people could see a sharp price drop with only days’ notice.