The rise of mega-dairies will be the inevitable consequence of the fall in milk prices, according to the Green Party.
South West MEP, Molly Scott Cato, has warned that a combination of factors, including price wars, trade agreements and the ending of the European milk quota, threaten to send traditional small-scale dairy farmers to the wall and will usher in an era of milk and dairy products from giant dairies based outside the South West region and even outside the UK.
Dr Scott Cato is particularly critical of supermarket chains that are engaged in price wars and refuse to pay enough to cover the cost of milk production.
She said: “Some supermarkets are using arguments about the global market to embark on a race to the bottom in terms of pricing. This is an abdication of responsibility towards a crucial sector in the rural economy of the South West and other parts of the UK. Read more