The price of milk
The old expression ‘the price of milk’ is rather apt in these heat stressed days of summer 2018. With temperatures in the high 20’s and early 30’s for a long period of time no one could have escaped noticing how parched our landscape is looking: trees looking miserable, lawns brown and lacklustre. So if you think it’s bad for your garden and lawns just try imagine what it must be like for arable farmers as they try to feed and water their animals.
This is where ‘the price of milk’ comes into the equation. With little or no rain for weeks on end the grass that cows, sheep and other livestock need to survive is rapidly turning from delicious and nutritious green to an unhealthy and unappetising brown. The amount of nutrients that the animals can extract from this browned grass is less than green grass and as a consequence the quality and quantity of milk produced suffers. Milk yields from cows have already slipped with the average cow now producing 3-4 litres less of milk per day than before the current heat wave started. Farmers combat this by buying in expensive feed stuffs to keep the animals healthy and producing milk, but these foodstuffs come at a price – a price that must be borne by someone and that is us, the consumer. It gets worse, the grass that is grown to fed the animals throughout the cold winter months is what should have been growing now, this too is brown and useless, so more expensive feed will have to be bought instead, and again at greater cost.
Milk is a commodity that we have come to expect as always available and in plentiful supply and, don’t get us wrong, it will be, but this summer’s exceptional lack of rain and high temperatures, whilst good for Britain’s vineyards and wine makers, has played havoc on the rest of the farming community. Milk is likely, in the coming months, to come under great pressure and as a consequence you can expect prices to rise in the shops and it will have an impact here at UKVending as some of our milk based products will, sadly, rise in line with the marketplace.