Sir; Most major supermarkets have offered to return 2p of the 9p a litre that they and the dairies have taken from milk producers over the last four years, on condition it goes straight to producers. This looks generous, but this milk price is still between 2p and 4p a litre below production cost. At least one large dairy has increased the milk supply price to middle ground customers, and doorstep deliveries by 3.5p a litre (2p a pint). Originally only 1p of this was going to producers, the other 2.5p was to cover increased transport and packaging costs. It would seem the supermarkets have got away lightly. They have dictated their own milk price increase, and presumably cuts in the price paid to milk producers over the last four years are still paying for the increased costs of the whole supermarket milk supply chain, while the price gap between the supermarket and middle ground milk retailers widens. There is a significant milk shortage and commodity prices are buoyant, while the supermarket milk price is still artificially low. Their greed is the most significant cause of the crisis, not only in the countryside, but in those communities served by essential, smaller local retailers. Dairy farmer Cumbria {{LETTERS }}

Topics