North West Region

Good luck to local farmers

Good luck to local farmers

Dear Editor,

I would like to wish the Gill family the very best of luck as they begin selling raw milk from their cows directly from the farm in an effort to stay in business.

Whilst not wishing to wade into the argument about whether unpasteurised milk is suitable or safe – that should be a matter for the consumer – the direction the Gill family are taking their business highlights a very real concern facing dairy farmers up and down the country.

Over the past 20 years or so, dairy farmers have been squeezed by an oversupply of cheap milk from Europe, meanwhile aggressive practices from big supermarket chains such as Tesco have been instrumental in forcing milk prices below the cost to produce it.

Farmers who are able to sell their milk directly to consumers represents a win-win for the industry and the general public. Since 1996, we have lost 600,000 cows whilst the number of registered dairy producers has fallen by 61%. 

This is unsustainable in the long term and therefore I would like to see innovative farmers such as the Gills take back control of their livelihood and be given even more freedom to sell directly to the consumer.

Yours faithfully,

Paul Nuttall, Burnley UKIP MEP

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