Fine Gael Senator Tim Lombard has called for co-ops to show solidarity with hard pressed farmers by not dropping the price of milk and 'shoulder' some of the pain of the economic downturn.
Senator Tim Lombard said: “Last month a number of processors decreased the base milk price due to the negative impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on dairy market returns.
“The co-ops are meeting this week to set their purchasing price for milk sold in April and I am urging processors to show some solidarity with our farmers.
“Speaking with farmers around the country, many are extremely concerned that there will be another price reduction. Our rural farming communities need co-ops to shoulder some of the burden of this economic downturn and offer fair prices for their produce.
“With the reduction in milk purchasing price co-ops are currently set to make large profits during the biggest health crisis since 1918. If co-ops make such profits in 2020 it will be at a huge cost to the agriculture community.
“I hope that the co-ops listen carefully to what farmers are saying. This is an unprecedented crisis and because of that there needs to be an unprecedented response from the Cooperative movement” Senator Lombard said.