Small and medium-sized processors and producers have failed to embrace the dairy industry’s voluntary code of practice, according to a review of the guidelines.

Review chairman Alex Fergusson MSP said the potential benefits to be gained had not been appreciated throughout the sector.

He added he was ­surprised at the lack of interest from smaller businesses and called on the dairy industry to do more to explain the “benefits and advantages experienced by producers and purchasers” who had adopted the code.

The possibility of expanding the guidelines down the supply chain to include retailers would further strengthen it, added Fergusson.