Border dairy amalgamation must not restrain competition in the industry - UFU
Ulster Farmers’ Union deputy president, Victor Chestnutt has warned that a possible amagalmation of border milk processors LacPatrick Dairies and Lakeland Dairies must not impact on competition in the industry.
Ulster Farmers’ Union deputy president, Victor Chestnutt said, “When we met LacPatrick earlier this year, they assured us they would look after their producers during this process.
"It is welcome news that they have now entered into exclusive talks with Lakeland Dairies.
"While we would like to see talks concluded in swift manner to help remove any uncertainty, we would strongly urge these two companies to ensure any deal agreed looks after the interests of their primary producers and does not restrain competition in the industry,” he said.
Last week the boards of LacPatrick Dairies and Lakeland Dairies have agreed to enter into exclusive discussions regarding an amalgamation of the two Societies, they said in a joint statement.
Any agreement will remain subject to approval - by members of both cooperative - as well as regulatory clearances.
A deal has been in the works since April, when LacPatrick's board said it was pursing a number of strategic options for the business.
LacPatrick is one of the biggest dairy co-ops in the Border region, as is neighbouring Lakeland.