Record prices continue for dairy farmers as Lakelands pay 55c/l

Despite already being at record levels going into this round of monthly milk payments, Lakeland Dairies set the price for June at 55.1 cent/litre

Equating to an increase of 3c/l on the May figure, the price was inclusive of VAT, for milk at 3.6% fat and 3.3% protein. The co-op explained that dairy markets continue to yield strong returns "given limited milk supply growth from key dairy producing regions due mainly to seasonality and higher input costs".

As a comparison, the Lakelands price for June 2021 was 19c/l less - it was stagnant at 36c/l.

This week Lakeland's spokesperson struck an optimistic tone forecasting: "Current market conditions will continue to provide good returns for the foreseeable future".

In the run up to this June price announcements, the ICMSA had flagged that breaking 55c/l "as a minimum" was warranted. The association's Noel Murphy had claimed that returns being achieved at milk processor level were still not being fully reflected in the price being paid to farmers.

"While we acknowledge that milk prices are at record levels, we also point to record high input costs, so while revenues are strong, the bills to be paid are unfortunately are stronger," said the Chairperson of ICMSA’s Dairy Committee.

Mr Murphy cited the Ornua PPI in excess 55c/l and Dutch dairy quotations currently over 60c/l.

“Farmers are being ravaged by rocketing input cost bills that have been building up since the start of this year. Farmers have to get every cent that their milk is fetching in these continually climbing markets,” said Mr Murphy.

In their brief statement announcing June's price, Lakeland noted that price increases were felt by others beyond the farm gate.

"Inflationary pressures continue to impact at every level of the dairy supply chain from farming, through processing and food manufacturing and onwards into the market," said the co-op's

They said that on average, the Lakeland Dairies pay out in the Republic will be 57.88c/l for June milk. All fixed milk price contracts will receive an 8 c/litre supplementary payment.

In the North, Lakeland Dairies increased its milk price by 2.5 p/litre to 44 p/litre.

On average, Lakeland Dairies will pay out 45.46 pence/litre for June milk including adjustments for constituents and quality, and volume bonuses and zero cartage charges. All fixed milk price contracts will receive a 7 p/litre supplementary payment.