Budget for 28c/l milk price until 2020: Teagasc
Dairy farmers are being urged to budget for a milk price of 28c/l over the next five years.
And Teagasc expert John Donworth says the expectations are that the milk price for 2016 will mirror the low milk price of 2009, hovering at around 23 or 24c/l.
"In 2009 it turned around quickly but I don't expect any turnaround until next year," said the Teagasc regional manager for Kerry and Limerick.
Teagasc is advising farmers to budget for 28c/l over the next five years in the hopes that the price trough this year would be offset by future rises.
However, he warned there were stark differences in earnings between the top third and the average producer.
"There is a gap in the milk price of around 3c/l between those who are doing things right and the average co-op supplier. That works out at around €150 a cow - which is enough for a decent repayment," he said.
Cork-based agricultural consultant Mike Brady said his company was working off a price of 26c/l for 2016 and an average 30c/l base price for the following four years.
"You'd nearly need a PhD to work out the milk price at the moment as there are so many different co-ops, winter milk prices and fixed price schemes," he said. "It is the human bit that is important - can a farmer take the heat if the pressure comes on."