Asda has adopted direct action against Farmers For Action pickets by hand-delivering solicitors’ letters to 28 of the group’s co-ordinators.

The letters request that FFA ceases picketing its RDCs over milk prices, claiming sales and deliveries are suffering.

It described the farmers’ actions as “unlawful conduct as a result of which Asda was suffering significant loss”, and threatened legal action with any costs incurred being sought from the farmers.

An Asda spokesman said: “We now deal directly with our farmers, and we have taken steps to put more money back into their pockets.”

FFA chairman David Handley blames the chain for starting the latest round of milk price reductions.