The Tableland dairy industry has “dodged a bullet” with no change to the farmgate price paid to farmers, an industry leader believes.
While the price – 59.2 cents per litre announced by Lionco – is the same as last year, farmers in the far north were left on the edge of their seats after watching Australia’s largest processor Murray Goulburn slash prices for Victorian farmers.
“We would have liked a price increase but compared to the rest of the game, we are fine,” said industry leader and Millaa Millaa farmer James Geraghty.
“When Murray Goulburn cut its price, it became very cold up here very quickly.
“Given the severe and catastrophic goings-on down south, we have dodged a bullet.”
Lion Dairy and Drinks managing director Peter West said the company’s 2016 opening pricing was a sign of Lion’s confidence in the dairy market.
“Unlike some of our competitors, Lion does not believe in retrospective price cuts,” Mr West said.
“Instead, we are committed to building long term partnerships that give our farmers the confidence they need to invest and grow in partnership with us.”
Queensland Dairyfarmers Organisation vice president Ross McInnes welcomed the announcement.
“The campaign encouraging consumers to boycott the $1/L milk and buy branded milk has so far been overwhelmingly successful, but it is by no means over,” Mr McInnes said.
“Dairy farmers in Queensland have been heartened that the public has rallied around local milk producers by doing what they can do best, choosing with their wallets.
“Lion’s decision not to reduce farmgate prices in Queensland is a vote of long term confidence in the local industry and shows their ongoing commitment to dairy in this state.”