Price negotiations are a private commercial matter in which Government cannot get involved, provided competition rules are respected. Milk prices are subject to change on a regular basis, and farmers understand that they fluctuate throughout the year as a result of supply and demand. However, the underlying price of milk is expected to fall as a result of CAP reform. Through the Dairy Premium, farmers were partially compensated for these price reductions.
The Government do recognise that the dairy industry is facing a number of challenges, not least because of farm-gate prices. Although the Dairy Supply Chain Forum does not discuss milk prices, it provides information to help the dairy industry make informed decisions about its future in a world with much freer trade and lower prices. It has also welcomed the moves in the industry towards more transparent milk contracts.