Two farmers respond to the news of the £5 million package announced in Central Hall Westminster
A Devon farmer who moved out of the dairy sector a few years ago writes:
“I hope you can find a suitably scathing response to the Spelman “gift” of £5 million.
“These grants may be fine if there happens to be some equipment you badly need and cannot afford – and then only if that happens to fit the grant’s programme.
“Such a bonus will not improve the situation where the basic cost of labour and food is not covered by the money received from the buyer.
“The normal price many now get seems to be the same as we were getting in 1995, which was adequate 17 years ago. As the price fell steadily thereafter, we quit a few years ago. So did many others.
“Milking is not such an enjoyable activity that one wants to pay to do it!”
A Scottish dairy farmer responded:
“ I’ve been contacted by a farmer that has worked out some other figures…
“Say 5.4 billion litres of milk affected by the ‘recent’ cuts of around 4 pence per litre (ppl) =
- £216 million that farmers would lose per year from the cuts
- or over £4million per week lost
- or over £20.5million per month lost……
“Then mention a £5million package to help hard up farmers! We don’t want handouts! We want solutions!
“I was at the London meeting yesterday. A great turn out of farmers and great speeches from the floor, all points well made, but was awfully disappointed with Paice (as I always am).
“In an email to a friend just now I wrote: “If it were the farmers shafting the milk buyers as much as they’ve shafted us there would have been laws brought out a long, long time ago to prevent it!!
“A voluntary code of practice?? He only needs to look at the banking crisis to see where that got us!
“The wording is maybe not for your distribution list but I was very angry at the time – apologies!”
Editor: we clarify: the term ‘shaft’ should be understood as: “To treat in a harsh, unfair way”: http://www.thefreedictionary.com/shaft