FARMER-OWNED dairy co-op First Milk has announced that it is holding its member milk price for October 2019.

This means that First Milk’s liquid standard litre price for the month will remain at 27.45pence per litre, and its manufacturing standard litre will remain at 28.37ppl, both including its member premium.

Farmer director Jim Baird noted that this marks the fourth consecutive month of price stability for the co-operative’s members, despite dairy markets weakening during that period.

“We are pleased to be able to provide continued consistency for our members at this time," said Mr Baird. "The business continues to perform well and has delivered a strong trading performance in the first half of the year. We will continue to do all that we can to maintain returns despite the obvious uncertainties ahead.”

NFU Scotland milk committee chairman John Smith, a First Milk member who farms in Kintyre, said: “The holding of the First Milk price for October will be a relief to producer members as the wet weather takes its toll on grass quality and availability which in turn puts pressure on milk yield and the levels of protein in the milk in particular.

“The low value of sterling makes the cost of imported soya and maize – key components of most dairy rations – far more expensive," added Mr Smith. “Members should also note First Milk’s warning that the future price may be difficult to hold heading into the winter as there is so much uncertainty about.”