By Farmers Weekly staff
MILK Marque is prepared to collect less milk and change the way it sells it in a bid to improve relations with processors.
Managing director Paul Beswick told this weeks Royal Association of British Dairy Farmers conference that Milk Marque had to become more commercial.
He hoped the Monopolies and Mergers Commission report into raw milk, due to be delivered to government today (Friday), would lead to changes, particularly of MMs selling system which was pushed onto the co-op by government at deregulation.
“That system has put a distance between producers and customers. It has to change to one where we can sit down with customers and agree terms.”
To avoid competition investigations, MM should sell less than 40% of GBs milk, he added. Next milk year, it will sell slightly more.
But tougher contract terms for members would have to be introduced, said Mr Beswick. They would no longer be able to leave and then rejoin if things did not work out. “If members agree rules will be changed,” he said.
Producers north of the border also received bigger milk cheques this month following Scottish Milks decision to pay out some of the so-called 13th payment to ease cashflow problems.
The payment of 0.3ppl on the volume of milk collected between April and December amounts to more than £1000 for the average member, says Scottish Milk.