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Dear dairy farmers, dear interested parties,

Never start to quit, never quit starting!

We begin the new year with these thoughts by Roman philo-sopher Cicero. We push on. We are going to continue our political engagement for a healthy dairy market. And we will run our farms back home on the basis of a solid economic foundation.

What can we expect in 2020? The reform of the Common Agricultural Policy remains an interesting topic on which negotiations will continue. The decision on the funds allocated to agriculture within the EU budget is also awaited. The consequences of Brexit are looming and, of course, the economic framework conditions for us dairy farmers still remain a mystery. At the end of the day, what will our milk statements look like in 2020?

Climate change and digitalisation are the new European Commission's flagship policies. Both areas are very important for us dairy farmers. Climate change is significantly changing the shape of the EU budget. The European Commission would like to dedicate a fourth of the total EU budget for climate and environment-related issues. In the future, agricultural and structural funds shall also be more closely linked to the goal of climate neutrality and climate change actions.

Farmers have been contemplating the effects of climate change for a long time now, and are actively working on solutions. In fact, we will be presenting a paper on this very topic at the International Green Week in Berlin this month. It will outline the basic conditions that we producers must first have in order to, thereafter, be able to even start dealing with environmental requirements. You can find out more about agriculture and environmental action in the article by APROLEP, our new member organisation from Portugal, where they touch on some measures for sustainable dairy farming.  

This edition of the newsletter also includes two interesting reports from our Swiss colleagues. The farmers' trade union Uniterre expresses its anger at imported butter on shelves in Migros supermarkets. Another article talks about the additional payment for cheese-making, which has not been appropriately passed on to dairy farmers.

We also showcase one more project within our "Fair Milk" series. This time around, we present our French colleagues and their brand FaireFrance, which has made fair remuneration for milk a reality.

And last but not least, some good news. We have achieved an important interim goal within last year's campaign on dumping exports of fat-filled milk powder: Data on fat-filled milk powder will be compiled and published by the European Commission as of 2020. We are very happy to see that the efforts by colleagues from Africa and by hard-working NGOs have led to this important step that will ensure more transparency and is a pre-condition to protecting local milk production in Africa.

Our commitment has paid off. It is clear that we can make things happen in Brussels and in our respective countries as well!

On that note: I wish you all a happy New Year 2020 and let's keep going!


Roberto Cavaliere, Member of the Executive Committee of the European Milk Board and President of APL Italy

Portuguese dairy farmers aim for zero-carbon milk


About 400 people participated in the national milk conference held on 29 November in Eposende and organised by the Portuguese dairy farmers' association APROLEP, together with AJADP, the young farmers' association of the District of Porto.


Uniterre's dairy committee outraged at imported butter on shelves in Migros

© Uniterre

If there is one message Swiss dairy farmers have constantly received since the abolishment of milk quotas, it has been the following: There is too much milk, buyers and processors are forced to find ways to deal with this surplus. Butter piled up, milk powder was massively produced and put in storage.



An illegal practice in Switzerland permits fraud to the tune of millions in the context of the additional payment for milk used in cheese-making

© wikimedia

For over a decade, the Federal Office for Agriculture (FOAG) has been covering up for the organised misappropriation of taxpayer money. Processors and creameries have not always passed on the additional payment for cheese-making (15 centimes/kilogram of milk) to milk producers and have kept it for themselves instead. This bonus was put in place to help the sector and should be paid directly to milk producers.


Important interim goal achieved: Data on fat-filled milk powder will be compiled and published by the European Commission as of 2020


When the "We should not export our problems" campaign was launched last year, the issue of fat-filled milk powder being exported to Africa at dumping prices did not figure in any way in data collection and was, therefore, given no consideration by EU policy-makers.

read more..

Fair Milk in France

© Fairefrance

Our newsletter series about Fair Milk projects goes on. This time we introduce FaireFrance, the French Fair Milk brand.


How can EU milk production be climate-friendly as well as socially and economically sustainable?



Invitation to a press conference on 16 January 2020 at the International Green Week in Berlin





European Milk Board asbl
Rue de la Loi 155
B-1040 Bruxelles
Phone: +32 2808 1935
Fax: +32 2808 8265
E-Mail: office@europeanmilkboard.org
Website: http://www.europeanmilkboard.org