Protest group Farmers for Action is ramping up activity in the wake of further milk price cuts this week.

The group has garnered 850 of the 1,000 member votes it needs to take direct protest action over plummeting milk prices. FFA chairman David Handley told The Grocer the group would be hitting the road with a series of meetings across the UK from next week to seek support for action.

“We can’t stand back and let any further cuts happen,” he warned.

Ongoing dairy market volatility has prompted First Milk and Dairy Crest to make further reductions in their milk prices over the past week.

With the Russian trade embargo exacerbating pressure, First Milk chairman Sir Jim Paice said prices had declined “further and faster than our price cuts.”

First Milk will slash the price it pays for both its liquid and manufacturing pools by 3ppl from 1 October, to 25.1ppl and 26.1ppl respectively.

“We are well aware of the impact this price cut will have on our members’ cashflow, but this move means we now have milk prices in line with our projected market returns,” Paice said.

Meanwhile, Dairy Crest is reducing the price it pays to farmers on standard liquid and Davidstow contracts by 1.75ppl from 1 October, bringing the liquid milk price down to 28.34 ppl and Davidstow price to 30.34ppl.

Dairy Crest group procurement director Mike Sheldon said a 17% cut in the global dairy trade auction price from July to August meant prices were now some 50% down from their peak at the start of 2014.