Wiseman is one of the major  firms not to postpone its milk price cuts

Wiseman is one of the major firms not to postpone its milk price cuts

Robert Wiseman Dairies is in talks with the National Farmers Union and its customers over its plans to cut the price it pays for milk as farmer anger centres on the Muller-owned processor.

In the last 24 hours, Dairy Crest has postponed plans for its proposed cuts, while Arla Foods and First Milk have reversed their own planned reductions.

Farmers angry at the plans had targeted processors and retailers in recent days with protests and blockades but their action now centres on Wiseman after the U-turns or price increases elsewhere. Farmers for Action held protests at Wiseman sites throughout the UK last night. 

"We are in active and constructive discussions with our customers and also the NFU with a view to finding the means to resolve this issue," Wiseman said today (27 July).

Following the protests at the company's facilities in Scotland, Market Drayton and Droitwich last night, a Wiseman spokesperson told just-food the sites have now reopened. "There were protests last night but they're over now...All of the sites have now reopened and we have full access to and from," he said.

However, the spokesperson declined to comment on whether Wiseman would follow its rival processors by not cutting prices on 1 August.

In a statement issued to just-food, the company said: "We do not have the income to sustain the current milk price at the current levels but we fully understand dairy farmers concerns at a time that on farm costs are rising."

Wiseman said two key customers, The Co-operative Group and Aldi, had increased prices in recent days. It added: "We are making progress and further statements will be issued when there are conclusions to these discussions."

From 1 August, Wiseman plans to reduce the price it pays farmers for their milk by 1.7ppl, followed by a 2ppl cut, which took effect in June.