Britain’s largest dairy co-operative Arla Foods has struck a deal with Asda to stock a milk range where customers can choose to pay an additional 25p on the retail price, with the extra money paid back to the co-op’s dairy farmers.
Arla Farmers Milk went on sale on 12 July in four-pint bottles of semi-skimmed and whole milk. The retail price is £1.20, while Asda-branded four-pint bottles are on sale at 95p. The extra 25p goes straight to Arla dairy farmers and, as a co-op, is shared among Arla’s 12,700 farmer owners.
People want to know more about where their food comes from and who benefits
The idea was conceived after research conducted by Arla showed that 63% of consumers would be willing to pay more for their milk, if they could be assured the extra money would go back to farmers.
Arla Foods amba farmer board director Jonathan Ovens said: “The launch of this new milk is a great boost to our dairy farmers. People want to know more about where their food comes from and who benefits, and are willing to pay more if they know it goes directly to the farmers that produce it. As we’re part of a co-operative, the money we receive goes back to the farmers who supply our milk.
“With farmgate milk prices much lower than we would like, we thank Asda for the continued support of our co-operative principles and also for providing an opportunity for their shoppers to give something back to Arla dairy farmers.”
Arla dates back to 1881, is the fifth largest dairy enterprise in the world and has production facilities in 11 countries. A similar scheme launched with Morrisons last year – the Morrisons Milk for Farmers initiative – with shoppers invited to pay more for milk and cheese; the extra paid back to Arla’s farmer owners.
Alongside the new initiative, Arla UK is also undertaking a tour of Great Britain to push a positive message of dairy products and farming.
A team will visit 20 locations such as shopping centres and supermarkets with a working tractor, fence and grass modelled to look like a farm. Visitors can take part in interactive activities and meet some of the farmers responsible for producing the dairy products on supermarket shelves.