As Arla this week kicked off a marketing push encouraging the public to support dairy farmers, trade bodies have said funding would be a hurdle to similar industry-wide activity.

On Wednesday, Arla launched the Support our Farmers campaign, highlighting the brands - including Lurpak, Anchor and Cravendale - that belong to the farmer-owned dairy business.

The activity follows DairyCo revealing farmgate milk prices had plummeted by an average of 9.4% from last November to August this year - and had fallen ­further since.

Consumers were looking for a proactive way to help dairy farmers achieve a better price for their milk, said Arla head of milk and member services Ash Amirahmadi. “British consumers already know our brands but not necessarily that they are owned by Arla,” he added.

Dairy UK - which this year launched a campaign to boost the profile of the dairy industry in Westminster - said it “wholeheartedly supported” initiatives to ­promote dairy products.

“As an industry, we’re well placed to engage in promotional campaigns, but funding is always an issue,” said Dairy UK CEO Dr Judith Bryans. “However, should funds be released in the UK, matching funds could be secured from the EU.”

Getting together as an industry to discuss promotion of dairy’s image to consumers was important, said DairyCo. The trade body, which is levy-funded, added it already ran public-facing marketing to promote the image of dairy farming through its Discover Dairy campaign.

“Any increased levy investment into public-facing activity could result in less funds being available for the important farmer-facing knowledge transfer and research and development,” said marketing head Amanda Ball.