Futures market could help hard pressed UK dairy farmers


South West MEP Julie Girling - Furbisher Media Ltd's latest client - is backing a proposed new scheme to strengthen the hand of struggling milk farmers.

It involves establishing a futures market in dairy products to reduce the price volatility currently damaging UK dairy producers.

The idea, championed by Conservative MEPs, is to be examined by a new EU task force set up to find ways of strengthening the position of farmers in the food supply chain.

The Agricultural Markets Task Force, established by EU Agriculture Commissioner Phil Hogan, will also look at issues such as market transparency and the legal aspects of farmers acting collectively.

The move has been welcomed by Mrs Girling and fellow Conservative MEPs.

She said: "Along with the Government, we have been leading calls for more than a year to establish a futures market for the hard pressed dairy sector. It is good to see that message is gaining ground and that Mr Hogan wants to look into the idea's potential."

The 12-member task force is headed by former Dutch minister and academic Cees Veerman and includes David Dobbin, Group Chief Executive of the UK's United Dairy Farmers. It is due to report in the Autumn.

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