Organic milk boom is not over, says OMSCo

By Chris Mercer

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Organic milk Milk

Claims that organic milk sales may have peaked after a dramatic
slow-down in sales have been rejected by the Organic Milk Suppliers

Figures from research group TNS suggested organic milk sales had slowed significantly in recent months, sparking concerns that a recent boom in the sector may have been short-lived.

But Rosie Palmer, marketing manager for the Organic Milk Suppliers Co-operative (OMSCo), told

its own data showed sales were still rising 24 per cent year-on-year.

OMSCo considers its figures, which were collated by AC Nielsen , more accurate because they are based on checkout sales, which account for 96 per cent of organic milk purchases.

Palmer admitted sales had slipped in recent months, but blamed this on a lack of supplies.

"The market is slowing down, whichever way you look at it.

But you've got to remember that in the current situation there's not enough milk out there."

She said OMSCo was anticipating slower sales growth throughout 2007 because of two-year period needed for dairy farmers to convert to organic production.

She added OMSCo scaled down promotional work last year because "the milk wasn't there".

Extra supplies are expected to give the market more balance in 2008.

More details will be revealed in an OMSCo report due out soon.

Confidence in the growth of Britain's organic milk sector has been such that Tesco recently agreed to cover admin and set-up costs for all new and existing members of OMSCo.

Tesco, which said last autumn organic milk sales were up 45 per cent year-on-year, will pay £400 per year for the next three years in an effort to bring more farmers into the sector.

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