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Farmers demand Coles increase price of milk after Woolworths scrapped $1-a-litre offering

Farmers have demanded Coles increase the price of their milk after Woolworths scrapped their $1-a-litre deal in a bid to help Australia’s struggling dairy producers.   

Woolworths announced it would be taking its cheap home-brand milk off the shelves from Tuesday and its two and three-litre bottles would sell for 10 cents more at $2.20 and $3.30 respectively.  

The supermarket said the increase in price would end up in the pocket of dairy farmers, but their move is yet to be followed by Coles.

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Dairy advocates have demanded Coles increase the price of their milk after Woolworths scrapped $1-a-litre milk in a bid to help Australia’s struggling dairy producers (pictured Dairy Connect and Woolworths CEO Brad Banducci celebrate announcemtn)

Last week, third generation dairy farmer Casey Treloar (pictured) created an emotional video announcing the closure of her family's farm was due to dollar a litre milk 

Last week, third generation dairy farmer Casey Treloar (pictured) created an emotional video announcing the closure of her family’s farm was due to dollar a litre milk 

The supermarket said the increase in price would end up in the pocket of dairy farmers, but their move is yet to be followed by Coles - who have been urged to follow their lead (stock image)

The supermarket said the increase in price would end up in the pocket of dairy farmers, but their move is yet to be followed by Coles – who have been urged to follow their lead (stock image)

Both of the supermarket giants have sold the budget option since 2011.

Dairy farmer advocacy group Dairy Connect called on Coles to follow their rival’s lead, saying the issue was a matter of ‘survival’ for primary producers.

‘Dairy Connect has called on Coles and Aldi to follow the same pricing model as Woolworths,’ CEO Shaughn Morgan said.

‘It would be manifestly unfair for them not to do so.  

The announcement by Woolworths comes as dairy farmers contend with a drought driving many of them out of business. 

Mr Morgan said the bargaining agreements between dairy farmers and supermarkets were unfair – adding action was needed now or Australia would be importing its milk within a decade.  

Woolworths announced it would be taking its cheap home-brand milk off the shelves from Tuesday and its two and three-litre bottles would sell for 10 cents more at $2.20 and $3.30 respectively (pictured dairy farmers rallying for the change on steps of Adelaide's Parliament House)

Woolworths announced it would be taking its cheap home-brand milk off the shelves from Tuesday and its two and three-litre bottles would sell for 10 cents more at $2.20 and $3.30 respectively (pictured dairy farmers rallying for the change on steps of Adelaide’s Parliament House)

‘We need action now or within a decade we’ll be importing our milk.’

The dairy advocate earlier on Friday lauded the announcement by Woolworths as a ‘great decision for the dairy industry’.

‘Dairy Connect applauds this decision and calls on all retailers to follow the lead of Woolworths immediately,’ he said.   

A Coles spokesperson said they would not be increasing the price of their budget milk .

The company stressed the past six months showed they were committed to supporting farmers and producers.

‘In the past six months we have committed $16 million to supporting this important industry,’ the spokesperson said. 

‘This includes contributing around $4 million to almost 640 dairy farmers through the Coles Dairy Drought Relief Fund.’

Daily Mail Australia has also contacted Aldi for comment on the pricing of their milk. 

Australian milk’s low price has been held accountable for cutting farmers’ profits in an already dire period for the dairy industry. 

Farmers have been campaigning against cheap milk sold by Woolworths and Coles for years.

Last week, third generation dairy farmer Casey Treloar created an emotional video announcing the closure of her family’s farm was due to dollar a litre milk. 

‘The clock has run out and it’s time to say goodbye,’ she said.

‘We are getting 38 cents a litre across the year and it’s completely unsustainable. We can’t really afford to keep going anymore.

The industry has been campaigning against cheap milk sold by Woolworths and Coles for years, saying it's driven farmers to the wall

The industry has been campaigning against cheap milk sold by Woolworths and Coles for years, saying it’s driven farmers to the wall

‘We’re forever the optimist that the industry will get better – but for our family, we’ve come to a point where we can’t do it anymore.

‘Dairying is something my dad has done his entire life, and I have done my entire life, but it has come to the point where our family has had to say ”that’s it for us”.’

The 26-year-old said their product had been devalued by dollar-a-litre milk, which had added to the problems facing the industry. 

She was later mocked by a vegan who told her to get another job. 

The NSW Farmers Association said the decision was a huge win for farmers, who had been fighting for change since $1 a litre milk was introduced in 2011 

The NSW Farmers Association said the decision was a huge win for farmers, who had been fighting for change since $1 a litre milk was introduced in 2011 

Last year, Woolworths began offering a ‘Drought Relief Milk’ range, at $1.10 a litre, with 10 cents to go to farmers. 

But it also continued to sell it’s $1 range alongside the more expensive product.

That will end on Tuesday when all stores will move to the higher price.

‘We’ve heard the outlook will continue to be extremely tough for dairy farmers right across the country,’ Woolworths Group chief executive Brad Banducci said on Monday.

Daily Mail Australia contacted Coles for comment but it remains unclear whether the supermarket will continue to sell the budget-option milk.   

The NSW Farmers Association said the decision was a huge win for farmers, who had been fighting for change since $1 a litre milk was introduced. 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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