‘Farmer patience has ended…upwards momentum must be recognised’

There will be many farmer suppliers scratching their heads as they contemplate the price disparities between co-ops and processors, according to the Irish Creamery Milk Suppliers’ Association (ICMSA).

Reacting to the latest AgriLand ICMSA Milk Price Tracker, which was published earlier this week for May prices, ICMSA president Pat McCormack said:

“There was a definite commitment on the part of Dairygold and its decision to pass back part of the market rise that we could all see.

“However, the price paid by most co-ops remains below the Ornua PPI [Purchase Price Index].

We would feel that farmers have been prepared to excuse the kind of lags and deficits that we’re seeing because they feel that in all the chaos and disruption around Covid-19, that certain allowances had to be made.

“But I can say categorically that that patience has ended and that the prices announced for milk supplied in June had better reflect the kind of rising markets that we’ve seen over the last eight weeks.

“We do not expect any co-op to try and brazen it out for a further month – prices will have to rise and the by-now well-established upwards momentum will have to be recognised and incorporated into farmer price,” McCormack concluded.