1 October 1999

Output figures rethink

INTERVENTION Board officials are tightening up the calculation of monthly milk output figures – used by agents and producers to assess the UKs quota position against profile – while repeating the warning that they are only a guide.

Chris Collins, IBs head of quota, said the collection and transfer of milk figures from dairies and processors had been reviewed to ensure the most accurate picture could be provided for milk output. This followed criticism of the IB in the last quota year when monthly figures encouraged some producers to exceed quota.

"That criticism was unwarranted. The figures are provided as a guide and the IB are under no obligation to provide them. The bottom line for producers is to stay within quota. Dont gamble producing extra milk if you cant afford to pay super-levy," said Mr Collins.

The IB relies on the dairy industry to provide accurate information which is used to calculate butterfat-adjusted deliveries. As part of the review, officials are monitoring the 130 dairies and processors (30 of which account for 95% of milk produced) to seek out irregularities which could affect the monthly figures.

&#8226 IB figurers suggest the number of temporary milk quota transfers is down by 17% implying producers are looking to lease in larger volumes under each transaction. &#42