12 June 1998
Producer fury at Dairy Crest
after tribute to Oz cheddar
By Catherine Hughes
DAIRY Crest is the latest firm to incur the wrath of farmers who are promoting British food as the best in the world.
Devon producer Sarah Sampson, of Hartshole Farm, Tavistock, was infuriated to find that the firm had not only produced a glowing tribute to Australian cheddar in Safeways instore magazine, but it was also sponsoring a money-off coupon as part of the promotion.
“Whose side are they on?” she demanded. “Here am I, doing my best to buy British products, only to see a British company, owned mostly by British dairy farmers, claiming that Australian cheddar is the best you have ever tasted.”
Ms Sampson added: “Dairy Crest, like all the other major dairy companies who have stated that the reason for Milk Marques failed selling round was due to a lack of demand for milk, does not stand up if they are importing and promoting Australian cheese.”
But a Dairy Crest official insisted that Australian cheese represented a very small percentage of the firms business.
Selling the imported cheddar alongside its other range of products enabled Dairy Crest to develop a stronger overall business with its customers and to improve profitability, she added.
For this and other stories, see Farmers Weekly, 12-18 June, 1998