The government’s farming minister, Victoria Prentis, has confirmed applications for a new dairy response fund will open on Thursday 18th June.
Relief for England’s dairy farmers
From financial troubles to excess milk, some dairy farmers are facing tough times because of the effects of the coronavirus pandemic and the reduced demand for dairy following the closure of restaurants, pubs, cafes and other food establishments.
The new government fund will be open to dairy farmers who have experienced a reduction of 25% or more in the price paid for their milk in April and May when compared to February of this year. Qualifying farmers can apply to cover up to 70% of their losses due to coronavirus, up to a total of £10,000 each. Applications can be made from 18th June directly to the Rural Payments Agency (RPA) and successful claimants can expect to receive their funding as a one-off payment from 6th July.
Helping dairy farmers cover fixed price costs
The fund has been established to help those most in need and in response to the recognition that some have struggled to fulfil their fixed cost of production. Its aim is to help farmers maintain production without impacting on animal welfare.
Farming minister Victoria Prentis said: “Our dairy farmers have a vital role to play in feeding the nation and we want to ensure they are fully supported at this difficult time. The application process for our new dairy fund will begin shortly, helping farmers who have suffered losses to get the financial assistance they need to keep production going. There is no cap set on the number of farmers who can receive this support or on the total funding available, and we will do everything we can to help our farmers at this time.”
The new fund follows the launch of the government’s partnership with the dairy industry to establish a new consumer campaign that promotes dairy based products to UK shoppers. The campaign, funded by the government, Dairy UK and the Agriculture & Horticulture Development Board, aims to highlight the benefits of tea, coffee and other milky drinks, in order to boost dairy consumption and therefore provide more income to struggling farmers and suppliers.
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