After weeks insisting that there is no crisis in the dairy sector, EU farm commissioner Phil Hogan has finally conceded, in an interview with Farmers Weekly, that UK milk producers are facing problems .

Mr Hogan defended his previous comments, saying he had been referring to the dairy sector as a whole across the European Union.

“I do acknowledge that there is a problem in the UK”, Mr Hogan told journalists at the NFU annual conference in Birmingham.

But the past two months had seen increases in global dairy options and prices, including for butter and skimmed milk powder in the Far East.

The European Union would continue to use its promotional tools to gain more market outlets at good prices in order to assist farmers, said Mr Hogan.

“That is the market orientated policy we have had for the past 20 years in the European Union and it is certainly the one that I favour.”

See also: All our coverage from the NFU conference