18 September 2001
Dairy Event on – despite livestock ban

By FWi staff

COWS will be notable by their absence at Britains Dairy Event – the annual dairy industry showcase held on Wednesday (19 September).

Foot-and-mouth precautions mean that the organisers, the Royal Association of British Dairy Farmers, have banned livestock from attending the show.

Disinfectant vehicle mats will be in place at the entrances of car parks and each vehicle will pass through spray wheel washes.

Pedestrian entrances will have disinfectant matting.

Event chairman Andrew Dyke said the foot-and-mouth measures were even more stringent precautions than those recommended by the government.

“We have looked into the biosecurity issue very thoroughly,” he said.

Visitors to the Royal Agricultural Centre showground in Warwickshire will be urged to work together in the supply chain to build a long-term future.

Ben Gill, president of the National Farmers Union, will tell show-goers that producers are continuing to strengthen their marketing organisations.

“But however they sell their milk they will need to work in collaboration with the rest of the supply chain to provide what the market wants,” he will say.

“All they ask is a fair price and fair terms.

Mr Gill will tell visitors that dairy farmers need to reflect on the future direction of the industry as the threat of foot-and-mouth recedes.

“Their aim should be to have the ability and resources to work with the supply chain to increase the size of the market so that there are benefits for all.”

Mr Gill believes co-operatives will benefit farmers by “moving up the supply chain” and becoming more involved in adding value to dairy products

“All of this will take commitment and it will not be easy, but I believe that dairy farmers have the business acumen and determination to succeed.”

More than 250 companies and exhibitors have reserved stands at the show despite the foot-and-mouth crisis, said organisers.

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