Quain said: “Examination of the figures and market returns shows room for a milk price increase on February supplies and it is absolutely essential that this is delivered for farmers.
“Most Irish processors are paying less than 32c/L and with the Ornua index at 33.7c/L just on that basis there is quite clearly ample room for a milk price increase based on market returns.
The LTO milk league shows that the Irish processors still occupying three of the bottom four positions while also paying a milk price below what Fonterra in New Zealand is paying.
Continuing, Quain said: “If milk processors in other dairy producing regions can return a higher milk price, there is absolutely no reason why our processors cannot follow suit as they are all selling into the same markets and we should be obtaining a grass-based premium.
“There is uncertainty at present with coronavirus but quite clearly a lot of product has been forward sold and this should not impact on milk price.
“Global milk supplies are expected to grow by no more than 1% in 2020 while demand is expected to grow in the range of 1.5-2% so the market should be in a fairly positive position despite the current uncertainties with coronavirus.”
Concluding, the ICMSA’s dairy chairperson said: “The overwhelming evidence points to farmers being fully justified in seeking a February milk price increase from their co-op boards.”