Sir; Watching the energetic president of the National Farmers Union on tv this week led me to wonder whether Ben Gill was actually suggesting that British farmers, currently on their knees with the foot and mouth crisis, should be looking towards co-operatives as their path to survival in the future. On several of his many recent appearances, the wise Mr Gill appears to have suggested that a switch to the co-operative principals of farming as seen in, say, Denmark, may well be the path for the future in the UK. Perhaps he believes that, by banding together in local co-operatives, the farmers would be able to negotiate from strength when it comes to dealing with the mighty multiples. Having said that, I wonder how many farmers would be willing to go down this route. And, if so, how many co-operatives could Britain sustain? My experiences with Denmark over the years also taught me that often the co-operative principles are heavily impregnated with local politics. And that could spell disaster. Perhaps Mr Gill could enlighten us? Former bacon trader West Sussex {{LETTERS }}