Milk, fruit and vegetables will eventually be imported, unless British food producers are fairly paid
The FT reports that Asda also justified the low prices paid to farmers saying they were set by global supply and demand.
First Milk, the farmer-owned group, one of the UK’s biggest dairy co-operatives, has suspended payments to around 1,200 farmers for two weeks. The company said that returns had fallen 50% in the past year and yet – the FT reports – farm costs are 36% higher than they were in 2007 and the single largest cost component of a dairy farm, animal feed, is more than 50% higher.
A table from an 2007 overview: Snapshot of farming in the UK, on the BBC website (below), will be of interest to readers news to the subject. Recent price cuts mean that farmers are facing milk prices of just 20p a litre, the lowest since 2007 according to the NFU said, but the following graph indicates an earlier date.
‘Fiddling while Rome burns’, DEFRA promotes involvement with the volatile global casino: “It is important to remember that the long-term prospects are bright with exports at record levels.”
Is there any future for those who produce perishable food and are currently held to ransom – unless they join forces and demand prices covering production costs?
Government: are share prices, lucrative consultancies and directorships more important than justice & food security?
Farmers’ lives are being shortened to give company shareholders, high flying consultants and industry leaders a substantial income and maximise corporate profits
A dairy farmer writes about the death of Andrew Hemming, vice-chairman of Farmers for Action:
This is so sad, I heard him speak at a few protests and meetings he attended in our area and he came over as caring, dedicated to our cause, and inspirational. I am truly sorry that his life has been cut short at such an early age and send his family my heartfelt sympathy.
I fear the same for members of other equally dedicated and caring farming families who are also fighting desperately for survival. They also may be shortening their lives by working far harder than is reasonable, or safe for their health, just in order to feed animals, meet bills and survive in a ruthlessly competitive target driven industry where maximising profit is considered by some as more important than people or animals, and for what?
To give company shareholders, high flying consultants and industry leaders a substantial income and maximise corporate profits?
All we ask is control of our own destiny by earning a fair and honest living from the land we are responsible for, with income derived from producing a good source of staple food that people need, and to leave a realistic and sustainable future for our families and communities, which is what Andrew was working so hard to achieve.
We do not want this continual conflict, and I am certain that Andrew didn’t
It is 2 years since Asda wielded their massive financial power to intimidate Andrew, David Handley and the other FFA regional coordinators by taking them to court.