Dairy UK has called on the new government to forge a “strong and supportive partnership” with the dairy trade at the launch today of its 2010 White Paper.

Speaking at the body’s annual dinner, chairman Mark Allen said dairy products had a crucial role to play in developing a healthier and more sustainable diet for UK consumers.

“Dairy foods are hugely popular and are important to the health of the nation,” Allen said. “Not only are favourites such as milk, cheese and yogurt brimming with high-quality nutrients, including calcium; industry-led initiatives such as the Milk Roadmap mean dairy foods made from British milk are environmentally sound as well.”

The White Paper urged the government to draw up a “clear and predictable policy environment that gives the industry the confidence to undertake major and sustained investment”.

The document also called for any regulatory intervention to be “evidence based… proportionate and implemented in a way that allows the industry time to adapt”.

Dairy UK also warned that the industry needed further restructuring to remain competitive internationally and predicted that further consolidation was inevitable.