Co-op First Milk is cutting its December liquid pool price by 1.4p/litre and its manufacturing pool price by 1.8p/litre.
These reductions will put the liquid price at 22.7p/litre and manufacturing milk at 24p/litre. They mark the seventh consecutive cut in as many months and bring the total cuts since May to 9.8p/litre on the liquid contract and 8.5p/litre on manufacturing.
Lower liquid milk and cheese returns over the past month were behind the cuts, said the co-op, which is owned by its farmer members.
“With cheese specifically, this impacts not only on what we are selling now, but on the price that we can sell our cheese stocks in the future,” said chairman Sir Jim Paice.
“The harsh reality is that prices are continuing to fall for dairy products everywhere in the world.”
Sir Jim Paice, First Milk chairman
“Additionally, we have been processing the majority of surplus milk supplied this year into skimmed milk powder. Returns from this market have declined further over the last month as many companies, particularly in mainland Europe, have increased stocks.
“The harsh reality is that prices are continuing to fall for dairy products everywhere in the world. As a board we have to balance the interests of individual farm businesses with the interest of the business owned by the same farmers. We have to set prices which reflect what we can achieve for the eventual product.
“We will continue to take whatever steps we can to reduce the impact of these negative market conditions, and ensure that the business is in the best possible shape when the market turns.”
First Milk supplies dairy products and dairy ingredients to domestic and international markets from seven sites across England, Scotland and Wales. Its range includes block cheeses, soft cheeses, raw milk, butter, skimmed milk powder, whey proteins and sports nutrition products.