First Milk upbeat on 2013 performance

First Milk upbeat on 2013 performance

UK dairy co-operative First Milk has raised its payout to its farmer-owners and increased its focus on driving growth in areas such as exports, the company revealed.

The dairy processor announced today (18 March) a further 3% return on on capital for its members, bringing its total payment for 2013 to 8%. This equates to an extra 0.25 pence per litre on top of the milk price members already received.

The group said the news comes on the back of a "strong performance" in the last six months of 2013. Chairman Jim Paice emphasised that First Milk is "on its strongest footing for many years".

The strategic partnership with Adams Foods, the UK arm of the Irish Dairy Board, which was announced last October, provides a "secure home for our cheddar in the UK", he stressed.

The deal also enables First Milk to increase its focus on developing the export business. "We can refocus our efforts onto areas such as exports and our newer added value products such as Lake District Quark," Paice commented.

In addition, First Milk is investing in increasing capacity and reducing costs across its sites. The company is "excited" about its prospects for the coming year, Paice concluded.

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First Milk continues to deliver value for its members

First Milk confirms the payment of its year-end, return on investment, to members.
A strong performance over the last six months of the financial year has enabled First Milk to announce a further 3% return on capital for its members. In October 2013 we increased the return to 5%, so for this year the total return to our members on their investment will be 8%. In addition to the above payment, the First Milk Board will pay a 5% return on members' preference shares.

These combined payments will see an average 1 million litre member receive £1200 in May. So together with the payment already made in October 2013, this will be equivalent to 0.25ppl of additional payments on top of the milk price for the year 2013-14. Our chairman Jim Paice commented: "First Milk is on its strongest footing for many years.

Our strategic partnership with Adams Foods is now up and running. This not only provides a secure home for our cheddar in the UK, but importantly means that we can refocus our efforts onto areas such as exports and our newer added value products such as Lake District Quark.

We are also investing in all our sites to increase capacity and reduce production costs, as well as meeting the requirements of our customers. As a Board we are excited about the prospects for both our industry and our business."

Original source: First Milk