morrisons milk for farmers

Sir, Following your piece ‘Morrisons Milk for Farmers gives just £290 extra’, we’d like to give some facts about the scheme.

Morrisons Milk for Farmers is just one of a range of measures we introduced last year to help dairy farmers. The most important of these was introducing a minimum price that we would pay for the liquid milk component of the milk bottles we purchase. We’ve paid above the prevailing market price and this has led to millions of pounds going back to dairy farmers during difficult times in the sector. The Milk for Farmers products give customers a choice about whether they also want to pay extra to help dairy farmers. The facts - based on our actual sales data - are that within one, two and four-pint product areas, Milk for Farmers is 14% to 16% of our sales. It’s 13% of unflavoured Morrisons milk sales. It led to an extra £360 going to back to every Arla farmer over the past 12 months.

The sales of Milk for Farmers have exceeded our expectations and are running at much higher levels than for other products where customers pay extra for ethical reasons. For example, sales of Milk for Farmers are well over five times that of organic milk.

When we speak to our farmers they appreciate the extra contribution that our customers are making. We note this week’s statement from the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board, who have said any retailer initiative that benefits farmers and aids consumer choice is welcome.

David Evans, head of agriculture, Morrisons