Milk Link ups prices to supply Britain's organic milk boom

By staff reporter

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Organic milk, Milk, Milk link

UK dairy processor Milk Link will pay farmers more money for their
organic milk from this October as the industry attempts to keep
pace with soaring demand.

Milk Link said it would pay producers an extra 1.75 pence per litre (ppl) for organic milk, taking its organic milk premium to 10ppl.

The group said this reflected "the business' success in ensuring nearly 100 per cent utilization of its members' organic milk"​.

The rise will also serve as an incentive to get more producers into the organic sector, to help Britain's dairy industry cope with soaring demand.

Organic milk sales were 50 per cent higher this July than in the same month last year, according to new figures from the Milk Development Council, despite a slight drop in sales fairly recently.

The growth adds to a 91 per cent rise in organic milk sales across the UK in the year up to last November.

However, Britain's Organic Milk Suppliers' Co-operative (OMSC) warned earlier this year that the boom has left Britain short of organic milk supplies.

The situation is a complete turnaround from a few years ago, when the industry faced a serious over-supply of organic milk, after farmers switched to organic production to boost income.

The OMSC said an extra 60m litres of organic milk would likely be needed over the next two years, although the group, fearful of causing another glut, cautioned against a gold-rush-like push on organic production.

Organic dairy is still considered to hold a lot of potential in Britain, with organic milk currently only making up one pint sold in every 30.

The UK's leading dairy firm, Dairy Crest, recently added to the profile of organic dairy by telling The Grocer​ it would launch a new organic milk under its Country Life brand. It is thought the milk would be sold first in Tesco, Britain's largest supermarket chain.

Greater interest from big players would see competition hotting up in the organic dairy sector. Its strong growth makes it an attractive prospect for larger dairy firms looking to add value to products to help increase earnings and protect profit margins.

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