2,800 Producers Now Co-Own Arla Foods Amba07 January 2014
UK – European processing giant Arla Foods Amba has welcomed a further 1,300 farmers to its supply pool, almost doubling the number of British farm suppliers.
The announcement adds to the now 13,500 strong producer network across North West Europe, with Arla suggesting further UK expansion of 300 million litres is possible in 2014.
Farmer Director of the cooperative Jonathan Ovens stressed that delivering a sustainable farming future was at the heart of co-ownership, which had been a goal for the past ten years.
He said: “Arla is committed to delivering a sustainable future for its farmers and by taking the ownership route, we are receiving the leading UK milk price.”
Mansel Raymond, chairman of the National Farmers Union dairy board said that price disparity between UK and mainland Europe had been a source of envy in the industry.
But he added: “Its good news that Arla has reopened its recruitment window so that British dairy farmers who wish to join Europe’s largest dairy co-operative will have the opportunity to be part of this successful business.”
AML Chairman and British farmer director at Arla Foods Amba Johnnie Russell agreed that price is crucial, but also stated the importance of global markets.
He explained that quota removal in 2015 would be likely to result in a ‘huge upsurge’ in European output, meaning that benefiting from global returns would be ‘essential’.
Mr Russell added: “Arla has a strategy in place whereby we can access world markets to tap into a broader marketplace for our products, which in turn deliver a higher return. The inclusion of Westbury skimmed milk powder on the GDT auction is just one example of this.”
In 2014, Arla wishes to garner a further 300 million litres of milk on top of the 3 billion litres currently supplied.
TheCattleSite News Desk