French milk producers are up in arms at a price cut of just over 6%, which they say has been "unilaterally imposed" by Entremont Alliance for milk supplies in July.

Western France milk producers' body, FRSEAO, and industry federation, the FNPL, have issued a joint statement criticising the reduction. 

They said the price cut, which works out at almost EUR20 (US$29.79) per 1,000 litres, has been forced through "without any discussion whatsoever."

Some 6,000 Brittany producers supply 1.4bn litres of milk annually to Entremont: 70% of the company's total needs.  

"In place of the EUR330 per 1,000 litres expected, Entremont only intends to pay producers EUR310 which is unacceptable," an FNPL spokesman said.

Entremont is the first firm to take advantage of the deregulation of the market, which the French government introduced this spring. Prices having previously been set by negotiations between producers, co-operatives and processors, the spokesman added.