Kerry cushions milk price drop with 3-month bonus

Kerry has become the latest processor to reveal its March milk price.

It has been confirmed that Kerry will offer a base price of 32c/L including VAT for milk produced during the third month of this year.

This is a reduction of 2c/L down from the 34c/L given for February milk.

In line with Kerry’s milk price contract commitment, the processor will pay a 1.5c/L bonus on all milk produced between January 1 and March 31. Milk included in fixed milk price contracts will not be eligible for the top-up.

This follows on from a previous 2c/L cut last month, which brought to an end five months of holding the previous milk price of 36c/L – VAT inclusive.

Other processors

First out of the traps last Thursday, Lakeland Dairies was the first to announce its March milk price. The co-op reduced its base milk price by 2.5c/L; but offset this through the payment of 2.5c/L support for all March supplies.

This maintains the effective milk price payout for March at 34.56c/L including VAT and lactose bonus, according to Lakeland.

Last Thursday also saw Glanbia announce a 2c/L cut for last month’s supplies, paying its milk suppliers a base price of 30c/L including VAT at 3.6% butterfat and 3.3% protein.

However, a weather support payment of 3c/L will be given – coming from the co-op – to maintain current payments in light of severe weather conditions, bringing it back to 33c/L.

This follows on from a previous 3c/L cut to the February base price – which dropped from 35c/L to 32c/L including VAT – though a top-up of 1c/L was also given.

Meanwhile, on Friday LacPatrick Dairies announced a 2.5c/L cut to the price paid to suppliers in the Republic of Ireland, who will be paid 30.25c/L.

A price of 25p/L (a drop of 2p/L on the February price) has been set for suppliers in Northern Ireland.

The decision comes on the back of continued weakness in the dairy markets, especially for powders, according to LacPatrick.