RSPCA warns of knock-on effect
Shoppers have been urged by the RSPCA to avoid purchasing cut-price milk in the supermarkets as it could have a knock-on effect on dairy cow welfare.
From August this year, it is expected that the price farmers should expect to be paid for the milk they produce will be around 5 pence less per litre than current earnings. Some supermarkets have contracts with farmers where the price of milk is linked to the cost of production; however, those who do not will be affected the most.
The main worry for the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals is that the drop in price will badly impact the welfare of dairy cows.
Deputy Head of the RSPCA’s farm animal science team and former dairy herdsman, John Avizienius, said: “Although a drop in cost of milk and cheap deals might seem like great news for shoppers we are concerned that ultimately it will be cows which will pay the price.
“Farmers cannot produce milk at a loss, it’s simply not sustainable, they cannot survive like that. We are in the ridiculous situation where milk is cheaper than bottled water at some supermarkets - that simply cannot be right.
“I believe shoppers would be even happy to pay an extra one or two pence on a pint of milk if it safeguarded dairy cow welfare.”