Ornua PPI falls for March

Ornua’s Purchase Price Index (PPI) for March has dropped from its February figure, the dairy exporter has confirmed.

According to a spokesperson for Ornua, the PPI for March 2019 is 104.1, adjusted down from 107.6 in February

This converts to 31.0c/L including VAT, based on Ornua’s product purchase mix and assumed costs of 6.5p/L, according to the firm.

The negative adjustment for March reflects lower butter, powder and cheese prices, according to Ornua.

Co-ops urged for prices ‘at least equivalent to PPI’

Farming organisations in recent days have urged Irish co-ops to hold milk price levels for March.

Speaking yesterday, Tuesday, April 9, Irish Creamery Milk Suppliers’ Association (ICMSA) Dairy Committee chairman Ger Quain said it is crucial that co-ops pay a March milk price at “least equivalent to the PPI”.

“Dairy farmers are approaching peak production, have significant bills left over from 2018, global milk supplies are tight and they need to see that their milk processors are paying the price that the market is returning to other processors across the EU.

“The ICMSA has stated bluntly that we do not accept a situation where some of our co-ops are currently paying a milk price that is below the price that the Ornua PPI confirms the processors themselves have received.”

‘Same milk price as in 1995’

Meanwhile, a “disappointing lack of ambition” has been reported by Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA) members from co-op board members they have interacted with in recent days, according to the organisation.

IFA National Dairy Committee meeting chairman Tom Phelan reported the findings from members following the association’s March milk price co-op board lobbying campaign.

“A number of industry leaders have flagged a milk price of 30c/L for 2019,” Phelan said.

This is the same standard price as farmers received for their milk 24 years ago in 1995, despite the massive investments made by farmers and industry to improve milk quality and lift our product mix further up the value chain.

The chairman added that IFA committee members are tired of the “fudging” carried out on VAT.