The Irish Farmers Association (IFA) has warned that voluntary milk production control mechanism may become “inevitable” to counter price volatility in the sector, according to the Irish Independent.
IFA National Dairy Committee chairman Tom Phelan said that forecast price reductions this year threaten to cut milk sales from a typical 100-cow herd by up to €1,000 a week compared to 2017.
The IFA Dairy Committee has agreed to support a voluntary system of production management across the EU, however, Phelan said that he would not support mandatory milk output cuts.
Phelan said, "We do need a more sustainable model of producing milk going forward.”
He added that any model should not impact on Irish producers because of their advantage of efficient grass production and low carbon footprint.
Phelan said that the markets were showing mixed signals on milk prices. He said that he is more optimistic as of late because of a decrease in production in New Zealand.
However, he highlighted the skim milk powder (SMP) overhang of 370,000 tonnes in intervention as a potential crisis.
He said, "It is the first time that the commission is losing money on intervention, because they always made money on it, and we are trying to get them to agree to sell it [the SMP] for feed."
© 2018 Checkout – your source for the latest Irish retail news. Article by Aidan O’Sullivan. Click subscribe to sign up for the Checkout print edition.