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This blog post was published under the 2015-2024 Conservative Administration

Tackling UK dairy supply chain issues and chance to shape future farming

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Dairy cows in a barn

There is positive coverage across the farming trade news websites of the launch of our consultation seeking to end any unfair practices across the UK dairy sector.

The UK Government is working side-by-side with devolved administrations in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland to launch the consultation, seeking views from dairy farmers and processors across the whole country on whether future regulation could be used to strengthen fairness and transparency.

The consultation is covered by the likes of Farmers Weekly, Farmers Guardian, Farming UK and The Grocer.

Proposals include an option to introduce a mandatory pricing mechanism within all contracts between dairy farmers and processors.

This would ensure the price paid for milk produced by the farmer is formally agreed within the contract, and that contract negotiations take place in a clear and transparent way.

Farming Minister Victoria Prentis said:

“It is absolutely vital that our dairy farmers are paid fairly for their high quality produce and I am committed to cracking down on any unfair practices within the UK dairy industry.

“I welcome all views to this consultation to determine how best we can guarantee fairness across the supply chain. This will help the industry continue its vital role in feeding the nation and ensure our dairy farmers can continue to be competitive in the future.”

You can read the full story on GOV.UK.

The same publications also covered our announcement of a series of webinars to help shape the new Environmental Land Management (ELM) scheme.

Six webinars have now been set up to ensure that farmers and others in isolation due to the coronavirus outbreak continue to have the opportunity to share their views on the proposed design of the new scheme.

While farmers are encouraged to sign up to and attend a webinar if they can, a policy discussion document on Citizen Space provides those who can’t attend with the opportunity to respond to the new policy ideas. Their views, experiences and advice will help to ensure the new scheme is co-designed with farmers across the country and does not repeat the mistakes of the past.

Farming Minister, Victoria Prentis, said:

“I very much look forward to working with farmers and land managers across the country to develop the future scheme and discuss how it will work on the ground.

“Many farmers and land managers are already contributing directly to the co-design of ELM by participating in the ongoing tests and trials and they’re doing great work to explore how the building blocks of the future scheme are put together.

“This conversation is a chance for farmers and land managers to have their say and help shape our future approach to farming alongside caring for the environment. I would encourage all those interested to sign up to an event and have their voice heard.”

Find out more about the webinars and how to sign up.

Follow Defra on Twitter, and sign up for email alerts here.

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