Members of the farmer co-operative Milk Link - the UK's biggest cheese producer and Long Life milk processor - are set to receive a £2m boost via an interest payment from the firm's processing profits.

The payment was the first of its kind by a UK dairy co-operative.

Supporting the co-operatives - Milk Link, First Milk, Dairy Farmers of Britain and United Dairy Farmers in Northern Ireland - is one of the main ways in which retailers can support the dairy sector.

This is because all of the profits generated by these businesses are returned to farmers, unlike the plc companies.