15 August 1997
SLOM group to sue NFU over quota advice
By Philip Clarke
A GROUP of SLOM quota holders is to sue the National Farmers Union over allegedly negligent advice it gave in respect of compensation claims in 1992.
SLOM producers are those who did not get milk quota in 1984 because they were involved in EU “non-marketing of milk” schemes at the time. Quota was eventually granted to them in 1989, at which point a group of five lodged claims for compensation for having been kept out of milk production for most of the 1980s.
This was eventually granted by the European Court in 1992 – typically worth between 6p and 10p/litre, or about £30,000 for a 70-cow herd. But strings were attached – in particular that compensation could only go back five years from the date at which a claim was lodged.
The NFU took a case to the European Court of Justice on behalf of about 400 SLOM producers, challenging this five-year limitation. However, the case was rejected earlier this year.
Now, a group of 30 farmers have instructed Birmingham solicitors Wragge & Co to pursue claims against the NFU (and some other solicitors) over advice they say they were given in 1992.