French milk processors have launched a ‘Made in France’ logo in a bid to combat rising imports.

Industry association Syndilait claimed France’s milk sector was “in great danger” and said the “Lait collecté et conditionné en France” logo would help the majority of French consumers who wanted to know the origin of their milk.

Syndilait, which counts French companies including Sodiaal and Laiterie de Saint-Denis-de-l’Hôtel among its members, pointed to an increase in liquid milk imports in recent months.

Between September and November, imports jumped over 38% year-on-year, Syndilait said. There had been an 18% increase in imports from Germany and a 50% leap in imports from Belgium.

Exports of French milk were down 2.7% year-on-year over the first 11 months of 2014, the association’s data showed.

Syndilait said producers had reacted by cutting their output of UHT milk, which dropped 4.4% in the 11 months to November.

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“Companies are faced with increasingly difficult market conditions, with a price war between retailers, sales down, and a growing influx of imported milk which destabilizes the French liquid milk sector,” Syndilait said.

“More than ever, the French want to know the origin of the milk they consume. A lot of information already appears on French milk bottles but, given the heterogeneity of this information and the lack of clarity of previous messages, companies have chosen to offer a unique logo that should easily help identify milk collected and packed in France when shopping.”