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Farmers blockade milk distribution centre in milk money strike
FARMERS blockaded a milk distribution centre in Woolston last night amid claims they are not getting paid enough money for milk.
The protest by Farmers For Action took place at the Iceland centre, Hardwick Grange at 8pm on Thursday.
Around 300 demonstrators blocked any deliveries from going in or out for two hours with the protest then continuing until 1.30am on Friday.
David Handley, chairman of the FFA, said farmers are losing money selling milk as major processors have reduced payments.
“Farmers can’t be running at a loss or expected to run at a loss,” he said.
“It means dairy farmers are leaving the industry. Soon the pint of milk we all love won’t be there any more and that’s a fact."
Mr Handley said that Iceland bosses had called within two hours of the demonstration starting and that the supermarket chain has been ‘open and honest’.
But he warned that more industrial action could be taken against other retailers such as Morrisons and Farm Foods.
“The sad part of it is why we are being forced to do it,” said Mr Handley.
“Why can’t we sort this matter out by talking to each other like adults?
“I suppose that when the industry gets greedy you don’t want to give that up.”
Iceland said the company was not making more profit from the price cuts by processors.
A spokesman said: “As we have consistently made clear, Iceland has derived no benefit whatsoever from the recent cut in milk prices paid by its processors, and we were happy to agree to meet a representative from Farmers For Action to demonstrate that this is indeed the case.
“Iceland is a major supporter of British milk and British agriculture, buying virtually all of its dairy products from UK suppliers, and we are committed to ensuring that both our suppliers and our customers get the best deal possible."