Dairy UK joins call on government to ensure successful brexit for the food sector

London, 12th February 2018: Dairy UK joins with farmers and the wider food supply chain to set out the terms of a successful Brexit

Dairy UK has co-signed a joint-industry letter detailing what a successful Brexit means to the food sector.

The thirty-six organisations, including Dairy UK have called on the Government to:
• to maintain free and frictionless trade with our major trading partner, the EU, and secure the benefits of existing EU preferential trade arrangements, at least until government can replace them with acceptable alternative arrangements;

• to ensure ongoing access to an adequate supply of permanent and seasonal labour;

• to continue to promote food production through agricultural policy alongside our existing high environmental, health and animal welfare standards, and;

• to ensure businesses operate under an efficient and proportionate regulatory system that is centred on scientific evaluation and that incentivises innovation and competitiveness.

Commenting, Dr Judith Bryans, Chief Executive of Dairy UK said: "At this time of uncertainty I'm pleased that through the NFU the food supply chain has come together to clearly communicate the needs of the sector to thrive in a post-Brexit environment.

"Protecting the interests of the food supply chain is not only important for the UK economy, but also for protecting food security of the nation. We hope the UK Government will heed these objectives and support the food sector throughout the Brexit negotiations"

Read the full text of the letter below:

Food is essential to us all. The UK food chain is passionate about providing a safe, affordable and secure supply of food for the country. However, Brexit presents an unprecedented challenge to the affordability, availability, and choice of food for UK consumers.

The UK's food and drink supply chain is highly diverse, supporting more than one in ten jobs and contributing £112bn to the UK economy. It stretches from the farmers who produce the raw ingredients, through the businesses that supply them with seed, feed, inputs and advice, to the industries that purchase their goods and manufacture, process and sell them on to other businesses and ultimately to consumers.

All of these businesses will be deeply affected when our membership of the European Union ceases. Many currently rely on a high proportion of non-UK permanent and seasonal labour sourced from within the EU; many are part of highly sophisticated and integrated supply chains that rely on the free flow of goods between the UK and other EU member states, free of tariffs, veterinary and customs check, and subject only to necessary phytosanitary checks; and many operate under an array of regulations and programmes derived from Brussels and applicable to all EU businesses. It is clear that the effect of the decision to leave the European Union is already being felt in the sector as uncertainty and lack of clarity impacts business confidence.

The UK food supply sector has come together to establish a common view of the objectives the UK government should pursue as it negotiates the UK's withdrawal, establishes its future relationship with the EU, and puts in place domestic policies.

We urgently call on the government:

• to maintain free and frictionless trade with our major trading partner, the EU, and secure the benefits of existing EU preferential trade arrangements, at least until government can replace them with acceptable alternative arrangements;

• to ensure ongoing access to an adequate supply of permanent and seasonal labour;

• to continue to promote food production through agricultural policy alongside our existing high environmental, health and animal welfare standards, and;

• to ensure businesses operate under an efficient and proportionate regulatory system that is centred on scientific evaluation and that incentivises innovation and competitiveness.

And sitting above all these, the government must be unqualified in its support for the UK's food supply chain and the business of food production, explicitly recognising their importance in post-Brexit Britain – in managing over 70% of the UK landmass that is farmed; in providing 3.9 million jobs in industries both pre- and post-farmgate; in contributing to two of the UK economy's big success stories: UK manufacturing and retail; and in providing a safe, secure and affordable supply of food to some of the highest health, welfare and environmental standards in the world.

We acknowledge our role in making Brexit a success – in improving productivity, competitiveness and driving growth in the economy, in creating jobs, and in achieving a more sustainable food supply system that minimises the impact our businesses have on the environment. But a Brexit that fails to champion UK food producers and the businesses that rely on them will be bad for the country's landscape, the economy and critically our society.

We call on the UK government to agree as a matter of priority on the terms of a transition deal that provides clarity, continuity and certainty for UK farms and food businesses as well as for consumers. Furthermore, we call on the government to take a constructive approach to the negotiations and to the task of establishing domestic policies in a post-Brexit Britain, working with devolved governments, the UK food and drink supply chain to ensure it champions and promotes our crucial food sector in all its many constituent parts.

Click here to see the full list of signatory organisations.


Dairy UK, The Dairy Council and AHDB Help Farmers ‘Tell it Like it is’

17th January 2018, London – Dairy UK, AHDB and The Dairy Council have launched a joint initiative to help farmers communicate the nutritional benefits of dairy to consumers.

Dairy UK chief executive Dr Judith Bryans launched collaborative industry initiative - 'Tell it Like it is' - at the Semex Conference in Glasgow.

The 'Tell it Like is' website provides dairy farmers the tools to promote the nutritional benefits of dairy to consumers of all ages via social media, along with guidance and knowledge to support them in effectively communicating their messages.

The website has a range of vlogs on nutrition and social media best practice, along with engaging and eye-catching infographics detailing the nutritional benefits of dairy products, suggested social media posts and guidance on nutritional and health claims legislation.

Dr Judith Bryans said "As a trusted source of information, dairy farmers can play an important role in communicating the nutritional benefits of dairy to the consumer. Together with AHDB and The Dairy Council, we have created this easy-to-use toolkit for farmers to call upon for resources and information, to guide and help them promote dairy easily and effectively."

Rebecca Miah, of AHDB, added "We are pleased to be collaborating with Dairy UK and The Dairy Council on this important project, many farmers put a great deal of time and energy into communicating the benefits of dairy on social media, trusted voices that are of great value to educating our consumers, and these resources will ensure this work continues and thrives".

These resources are just one of a number of dairy promotion activities from AHDB and Dairy UK. The two organisations launched a £1.2 million consumer campaign last November, and after a successful launch, will soon online videos, social media and major advertising across the country.

Visit the website now at: www.tellitlikeitis.co.uk


Dairy UK Welcomes 25 Year Plan

Dairy UK welcomes the publication of The 25 Year Environment Plan and supports the Government's aim to deliver an environmentally sustainable future. We are encouraged by the commitment to evidence-led policy in conjunction with industry, and look forward to working with the Government on the delivery of these goals.

The UK dairy sector recognises the role it plays in delivering safe, nutritious and sustainable produce. Through The Dairy Roadmap, we have continued to set targets aiming to reduce the industry's environmental footprint. Included in these targets are commitments to improve biodiversity, lower emissions and to send zero ex-factory waste to landfill by 2020. The industry has also pledged to improve the design of dairy packaging to maximise recycled content, improve recyclability and deliver product protection to reduce food waste.

Our commitment to sustainability was evidenced in the results of the 2017 Dairy UK Environmental Benchmarking Report, which detailed impressive improvements made since 2008 across a wide range of environmental indicators, including a 30% shift in the destination of waste away from landfill, toward recovery and recycling. Never complacent, we remain committed to continual improvement and achieving an environmentally sustainable future for dairy.


UK Dairy Industry Surpasses Environmental Targets and Demonstrates Commitment to Continual Improvement

13th December 2017 – Recently published results from the Environment Agency in the Climate Change Agreement biennial progress report show that the dairy sector has achieved an 18.05% energy efficiency improvement since 2008.

With this improvement, the sector has already exceeded the 2020 Climate Change Agreement and Dairy Roadmap targets of 13.6% and 15% respectively.

These results are complemented by those of the 2017 Dairy UK Environmental Benchmarking Report, which details substantial environmental improvements within the UK dairy sector, including a 23% increase in water efficiency and a 30% increase in the amount of waste recovered or recycled since 2008. The Dairy UK Environmental Benchmarking Survey is a valuable resource to achieve these aims, and allows dairy processors to track their performance and identify areas for improvement.

The main findings of the 2017 Dairy UK Environmental Benchmarking Report are;

• 18% increase in primary energy efficiency (kWh/tonne);
• 23% increase in water efficiency (m3/tonne);
• 17.5% increase in raw effluent efficiency (m3/tonne);
• 56% decrease in COD per m3 raw effluent;
• A 30% shift in the destination of waste away from landfill and towards recovery or recycling.

Dr Judith Bryans, Chief Executive of Dairy UK commented on the results, saying: "These are incredibly positive results which demonstrate the effective steps taken by the UK dairy industry to reduce its environmental footprint and meet the targets of The Dairy Roadmap."

Through The Dairy Roadmap the UK dairy sector has demonstrated its commitment to environmental sustainability, whilst ensuring the continued prosperity of the industry, and also the continued provision of safe, nutritious and sustainable produce for years to come."


Dairy UK Welcomes Brexit Progress and Calls for Clarity on Trade

London, 8th December 2017: Dairy UK today welcomed the announcement today of progress made between the UK Government and European Union on Brexit negotiations.

Dairy UK said it looked forward to the start of trade discussions which will be crucial in ensuring that the UK dairy industry can thrive in a post-Brexit era.

Dairy UK said the joint agreement on the rights of EU and UK citizens residing in the UK and in other member states and a framework for ensuring there will be no hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland were 'vitally important steps in the right direction'.

Commenting on this morning's announcement, Dr Judith Bryans, Chief Executive of Dairy UK said: "We are very pleased that progress has been made on these important issues, so that the all-important talks on trade can begin. We have continued to stress how important ensuring there remains no border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland is to the dairy industry supply chain, which requires the transportation of raw milk and other products across the border without tariff or administrative barriers. We also welcome the commitment to protect the East-West border, as it is crucial there remains regulatory alignment between Northern Ireland and Great Britain so trade can continue freely within the UK. This is important for a number of reasons, including avoiding an undue burden of regulation for businesses within the UK, and because dairy and meat from NI make an important contribution to food on shelf in GB.

"The dairy industry in the UK also relies on continuous access to labour. The progress on the rights of EU citizens is very welcome but there is a great deal more work to be done in this area to ensure that our industry can move into the post-Brexit era with confidence.

"The UK dairy industry is strategically important for the nation. What we need now is greater detail and clarity on our future relationship with the EU in the transition period and beyond, so that the dairy industry has both certainty and stability in which to do business. We are ready and willing to continue providing information on Brexit and trade to Government, to ensure we achieve the optimum outcome for the dairy industry."


Dairy Committed to its Global Nutrition and Environmental Goals

Belfast, 30th October 2017: World political and agricultural leaders were told today that dairy is committed to playing a vital dual role in feeding the world with nutritious foods - and protecting the environment.

Speaking at the International Dairy Federation (IDF) World Dairy Summit in Belfast, Dr Judith Bryans, President of the IDF, said the global dairy community is one billion people strong and is currently feeding 6 billion consumers.

She said that 20 dairy producing countries are now signed up to a global initiative called the Dairy Declaration of Rotterdam which makes a commitment to meeting the sustainable development goals set by the United Nations.

Dr Bryans said that dairy producing countries believe in creating a 'healthier planet', addressing inequality and lifting people out of poverty. "We believe in dairy. We have a strong story to tell in terms of nutrition and also the progress we are making environmentally. No sector is perfect and there is always room for improvement but we have a vision, we have our goals and we will spare no effort in achieving them."

Dr Bryans was addressing a World Leaders' Forum which included Michael Gove MP, Secretary of State for the Department of Food, Environment and Rural Affairs, Phil Hogan, EU Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development and Dr Ren Wang assistant director general of UN's Food and Agricultural Organisation.

Mr Gove told the Summit that the UK Government is committed to supporting the dairy industry.

He said that during Brexit negotiations, the UK Government wants to ensure that supply lines are solid, no barriers to trade are erected and labour can be accessed where it is needed. "This will be at the forefront of our minds", said Mr Gove.

Commissioner Hogan said the issue of free movement of people was "a difficult issue for the UK and for the EU for different reasons, and will require negotiations." Mr Hogan told the Summit that EU agri exports continued to grow even though the sector was still adjusting to the post-quota environment. He said there is need for an ongoing commitment to sustainability 'from farm to fork'.

Dr Wang told the Summit that the commitment of the dairy sector to the UN's 2030 sustainability goals was welcome, and what is now needed is for national frameworks to be developed which set out objectives and performance indicators.


Dairy UK Sets Out ‘Game Changing’ Hopes And Fears For Industry Over Brexit

• UK dairy industry turns over £27.8 billion-a-year and supports 70,000 jobs, which should be recognised in Brexit negotiations
• Investment in UK dairy remains high despite uncertain climate
• Global demand for dairy increasing and UK consumers remain loyal

London, 25th October 2017: Dairy UK has today published the 'White Paper' report for 2017 which details the 'game changing' opportunities and challenges which the industry is facing over issues such as Brexit and consumer confidence in dairy foods.

Dairy UK have called Brexit the most defining issue the industry has faced for generations, with the White Paper 2017 identifying what Brexit needs to deliver to safeguard the future interests of an industry that employs more than 70,000 people, and has an overall turnover of nearly £28 billion.

On prospects for the industry, the White Paper reveals that an increasing demand for dairy globally is putting world milk production on an upward trend.

On the issue of Brexit, Dairy UK says;
• Continued trading agreements with the EU without tariff and non-tariff barriers will mean massive export and growth opportunities – failure will damage exports and reduce demand for dairy;
• The worst outcome from Brexit would be a return to WTO rules;
• An unhurried transition period would give the industry the chance to adapt and take advantage of the opportunities Brexit creates;
• Access to skilled and unskilled labour is vital - failure to maintain access will drive up operating costs, with a major impact on margins;
• UK dairy farmers should not be disadvantaged compared with their European neighbours;
• The Northern Ireland border issue should be resolved by creating a frictionless and seamless border regime that could be a blueprint for future arrangements with the EU.

On industry prospects, the White Paper reveals;
• Demand for dairy is growing globally;
• Milk prices are on an upward trend;
• Government is being urged by Dairy UK to work collaboratively with the industry to help exploit export opportunities around the world;
• Government is being urged to review the Eatwell Plate Guide to take account of benefits of dairy.

On consumer confidence, Dairy UK says;
• UK consumers continue to support dairy loyally, despite the arrival of plant-based alternative drinks and anti-dairy activism;
• 87% consumers are drinking cow's milk, 94% of adults buying cheese and 78% enjoying yogurt or fromage frais;
• Latest figures show continuous growth in volume and value of sales of milk, cream, cheese yogurt, butter and organic dairy products;
• The UK government should ensure that nutrient-rich dairy products remain exempt from the forthcoming Sugar Drinks Industry Levy when it is implemented next year.

Paul Vernon, Chairman of Dairy UK, said: "The White Paper demonstrates that consumer love for dairy remains very strong, and we have to ensure that we are equipped and ready to continue to help feed the nation for generations to come.

"Brexit is a monumental challenge and a game changer. If Brexit is successfully delivered there is tremendous potential in terms of exports and product development. If it is a failure, there will be far reaching consequences for dairy.

"No effort can be spared by the industry, the UK government and the EU to secure a positive outcome and we will continue to give every assistance to the government to make that happen."

"Given the increase in global demand for dairy, prospects are good. We do, however, need to seize the moment – and that will require yet more of the innovation and inspiration that have been the hallmark of our industry for generations."

Dr Judith Bryans, Chief Executive of Dairy UK, added: "The White Paper details the performance of our industry across a wide range of areas including nutrition, consumer trends, farming and milk processing, animal health and welfare and the environment.

"It shows we have a track record we can be proud of but, like any major industry, we have to maintain our deep commitment to continually improve and innovate. Ultimately, we are judged by consumers and we are very grateful for the outstanding and enduring support they give to dairy."

The full White Paper can be accessed here


The Role of Dairy in Teen Diets to be Discussed at Upcoming World Dairy Summit

Belfast, 19th October 2017: The crucial role that dairy can play in teenage diets will be a key debate at the forthcoming World Dairy Summit being held in Belfast later this month.

Around a fifth of teenage girls across the world are currently falling short on their recommended daily intake of calcium, iodine and riboflavin and dairy could help to fill the gap.

Whilst dairy consumption is generally on the rise, teenagers who turn away from dairy are not aware of the potential impact on long-term health.

Good nutrition is important for everyone but for teenagers is particularly important because the teen years are critical for the laying down of calcium in bone. Unfortunately, the diets of teenagers are not always good and this can have implications for the long term.

The topic of teenage nutrition and attitudes towards dairy consumption is something that will be discussed in greater detail at the International Dairy Federation’s (IDF) World Dairy Summit 2017.

Internationally- renowned speakers will share their knowledge and experience in this area. Marianne Smith Edge, Dietitian and Founder AgriNutrition Edge (formerly The International Food Information Council (IFIC) Foundation, USA) will focus on understanding Gen Z attitudes and consumption patterns as a foundation for dairy consumption and innovation. Dr Moshe Mishali, Psychologist, University of Haifa, Israel will focus on behaviour change in families around diets and milk consumption.

Dr Judith Bryans, President of the IDF and Chief Executive of Dairy UK, added: “Rapid increases in height, weight, and bone development, along with a number of other physical changes during the teenage years can have a major influence on nutritional requirements, and demand for both nutrients and energy are high. The teenage diet is a challenge faced by our industry worldwide and I look forward to welcoming our renowned speakers to Belfast and learn from their expertise in this area.”

In addition to nutrition, other topics will also be discussed during the summit, including animal health and welfare, food safety, science and technology, sustainability and farm management in the dairy sector.

The summit will be hosted by the UK National Committee of the International Dairy Federation (IDF) and will take place in Belfast from 30th October to 2nd November. More information on the summit can be found here: http://idfwds2017.com/


UK Signs up to Dairy Declaration of Rotterdam

The UK dairy industry today (Thursday October 19) endorsed a declaration to promote the sustainability of dairy systems worldwide.


The Dairy Declaration of Rotterdam, a unique partnership between the International Dairy Federation (IDF) and the Food and Agricultural Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) signals a recognition of the dairy sector’s commitment towards feeding the world with safe, nutritious and sustainable products.


Leading UK dairy organisations endorsed the principles of the Declaration in an official signing in London.


Signing the declaration today were Dr Judith Bryans, President of the International Dairy Federation and Chief Executive of Dairy UK, Paul Vernon, Chairman of the Dairy UK, Gwyn Jones, chair of the AHDB Dairy Board and Michael Oakes, chair of the NFU Dairy Board.


The Dairy Declaration recognises the major contribution that dairy makes to countries’ economies, the essential role of dairy in a balanced diet, and the key role the industry plays in addressing environmental degradation and climate change.


Dr Judith Bryans said: “We are delighted that the UK has joined countries from across the world in demonstrating the importance of the dairy to the global community. When the UN set its Sustainable Development Goals it was clear that dairy was part of the solution in terms of ensuring delivery of a number of goals around nutrition, healthy populations, a healthy planet, and helping to lift people out of poverty.


“The world’s population is growing and dairy plays a key role in meeting their needs. To be fit for the future we must be innovative and ensure we have products that are culturally acceptable, nutritious, safe, sustainable and affordable.”


Paul Vernon, Chairman of Dairy UK, said: “We are proud that the UK as a leading dairy producing nation is endorsing the Dairy Declaration. We are an innovative industry with a deep commitment to environmental good practice and nutritional benefit. We can take pride in the fact that our nutritious products can play such an important part in meeting global sustainability and nutritional responsibilities and ambitions.”


Gwyn Jones said: “We’re proud to join with others around the world endorsing the Dairy Declaration, which recognises the major economic contribution that dairy makes to realising the sustainable development aspirations of farmers and wider communities.”


Michael Oakes said: “For the NFU the Dairy Declaration builds on the excellent work of the Sustainability Roadmap, as well as building on the social, economic and nutritional benefits of dairy, highlighting the important role it plays in rural economies around the world.”


The Dairy Declaration of Rotterdam was launched at the World Dairy Summit in 2016. In the last year 19 countries have signed up.


Dairy UK Confirms Commitment to Industrial Decarbonisation & Energy Efficiency Action Plan

London, 16th October 2017: The Food & Drink Joint Industry - Industrial Decarbonisation and Energy Efficiency Action Plan was published recently, identifying actions which will promote long-term decarbonisation, energy efficiency and emissions reductions within the food and drink sector.

Dairy UK has pledged to continue its collaboration with Government and the wider food and drink sector to reduce carbon emissions and contribute to the decarbonisation of the UK by 2050 while maintaining the commercial viability of the food and drink sector.
Commenting on the publication of the action plan Dairy UK Chief Executive Judith Bryans said; “The dairy industry takes its environmental responsibilities very seriously, and so the publication of the action plan is very welcome. We look forward to continuing to work with both the government and our members to help deliver a sustainable future for the UK dairy industry.”
Published alongside The Clean Growth Strategy, The Action Plan builds on the cooperation between industry and governments and the publication of the Food and Drink Sector – Industrial Decarbonisation and Energy Efficiency Roadmap to 2050.
By identifying commitments, this action plan sets the direction for future collaboration between government and industry that will enable the food & drink sector to decarbonize and improve its energy efficiency. The Action Plan will also assist the dairy sector in meeting the ambitious energy efficiency and emissions reductions targets set out in the Dairy Roadmap for 2020 and 2025 and will provide the basis for longer-term improvements.


Consumer Confidence in Dairy Foods a Key Priority

Belfast, 12th October 2017: Maintaining consumer confidence in the safety and integrity of dairy products is a key priority for the industry on a global scale.

Global demand for dairy products is rising and the popularity of nutritious dairy produce remains strong. Consumer expectations on food safety are high and food safety will be a key topic discussed in depth at the forthcoming World Dairy Summit in Belfast.

Professor Chris Elliott from Queen’s University Belfast will give the keynote speech at the dedicated Food Safety Conference taking place during the summit, which will focus on the relevance of dairy products and the challenges faced by the food sector, drawing on country-specific experience from New Zealand, China and the UK. Professor Elliott is a world-leading authority in the detection and control of chemical contaminants in agri-food and led the UK government's independent review of food systems following the 2013 Horsemeat scandal. He is currently the Director of the Institute for Global Food Safety.

Speaking ahead of the conference, Professor Elliott said: “The integrity of the global food supply system is subject to huge challenges in terms of accidental and deliberate contamination. Milk and dairy products are a huge and important source of human nutrition worldwide but are equally subject to these growing challenges.”

Dr Judith Bryans, President of the International Dairy Federation and Chief Executive of Dairy UK, added: “As a global industry, we deliver safe, wholesome and nutritious dairy foods to consumers all over the world and we are resolute in our commitment to keep doing so.

“Across the world, the dairy industry has developed exceptional standards of food safety throughout the supply chain and we will continue to invest in this to ensure that the integrity and authenticity of our products is upheld.”

In addition to food safety, other topics will also be discussed during the summit, including issues surrounding animal health and welfare, science and technology, sustainability and farm management in the dairy sector. Emerging issues such as cyber security and 3D food printing will also be discussed.

The summit will be hosted by the UK National Committee of the International Dairy Federation (IDF) and will take place in Belfast from 30th October to 2nd November.

More information on the summit can be found here: http://idfwds2017.com/


Dairy UK Backs National Campaign Celebrating Milk

London, 27th September 2017: Dairy UK is celebrating World School Milk Day today by backing a nationwide initiative to get primary schools sharing their favourite thing about milk.

The purpose of the campaign, launched today by The Dairy Council, is to celebrate the nutritional benefits of drinking milk, as well as educating pupils about the important role it plays in their diet.

Schools across the country have been submitting ‘milky’ videos, photos and messages onto a dedicated ‘Milk Memo’ websitefor the chance to win outdoor sports equipment for their schools. Entries so far include milk poems, collages and a ‘milk carton’ cow.

Dr Judith Bryans, chief executive of Dairy UK, said: “Good nutrition and physical activity are key to ensuring children have healthy bodies. Milk is a nutrient rich food and a staple part of most children’s diets. Consuming milk is an easy way to help children meet their recommended daily intake of calcium.

“Schools play a vital role in ensuring children have milk to drink and helping them to understand why it’s good for them.

“The Dairy Council’s initiative is the perfect way to have a bit of fun, interact as a class, and learn about why making healthy eating and drinking choices matters.”

Erica Hocking, senior nutrition scientist at The Dairy Council, added: “We’re delighted that schools have got involved with this initiative. Milk is an easy, tasty and affordable way to help children to get their recommended daily allowance of calcium, protein and iodine, and we hope pupils have enjoyed taking part.

“Once all the entries have been sent in, The Dairy Council will select the most creative entry to win outdoor games for their class.”

In its 18th year, World School Milk Day celebrates school milk programmes globally. It is organised by the Food and Agricultural Organisation of the United Nations (UN FAO) and is celebrated by over 30 countries worldwide.

To view the Milk Memo, please visit: www.milkhub.uk.


Dairy UK Responds to Theresa May's Speech on Brexit

London, 22nd September 2017: Proposals for a transition period and protections for the Irish border and EU citizens living in the UK are welcome, but concerns remain on EU labour and farming subsidies commented Dr Judith Bryans, chief executive of Dairy UK, earlier today. 

Dairy UK issued the following statement today in response to Prime Minister Theresa May's speech in Florence on Brexit negotiations and the future trading relationship with the European Union.

Dr Judith Bryans, chief executive of Dairy UK, commented: "We welcome Prime Minister Theresa May’s proposals today to protect the common travel area of the Republic of Ireland and to protect the rights of EU citizens working in the UK.  It is of upmost importance that the dairy sector can trade with confidence and certainty, and so we welcome the proposed period of transition after Brexit. The EU is our biggest export market, and so it is vital we can continue to trade tariff-free and maintain a close and positive relationship whilst negotiations continue and beyond.

We welcome a transition period as this would provide stability. However, we also believe it is important that both the UK and EU take steps to address ongoing concerns over access to skilled and unskilled EU labour and subsidies for UK farmers once this period ends. These represent key areas of concern for the UK dairy industry.

Dairy UK will continue to represent the interests of the UK dairy sector to government throughout the negotiations to ensure our members can trade successfully, and consumers can continue to enjoy British dairy products."


Dairy UK Announces Paul Vernon as new Chairman

London, 14th September 2017: Dairy UK announces Chief Executive of Glanbia Cheese, Paul Vernon as new chairman.

Paul has been elected to succeed Dr David Dobbin, at the Dairy UK Annual General Meeting held today.

Mr Vernon, who has worked with Glanbia for 22 years, said of his new role: "For me it is a huge privilege to be elected chairman of an organisation that puts itself at the forefront of representing the interests of one of the nation’s greatest industries. I am both appreciative and humbled by the support other leading figures across the supply chain have given me, in accepting this role.

"I can make one firm commitment without any hesitation, and that is that Dairy UK will spare no effort in fighting for the interests of dairy. We have massive challenges ahead of us, particularly in relation to Brexit, so there has never been a more important time to remind government and decision-makers of the relevance and importance of dairy.  Whilst Brexit might dominate the political landscape, we mustn’t forget there’s still work to do across a whole range of other key issues facing the industry, such as protecting and promoting the nutritional benefits of dairy foods.

"These are extraordinary times, but where there is challenge there is also opportunity. We must ensure our industry works to create an environment conducive to these new opportunities."

Dairy UK CEO Dr Judith Bryans welcomed Paul to the position and paid tribute to former chairman David Dobbin commenting: “The Board and the executive team at Dairy UK would like to express their thanks to David for his dedication in guiding Dairy UK and the industry forward during his period as Chair. We are lucky to be gaining another leading industry figure in Paul Vernon, to lead Dairy UK through what will be an extraordinarily busy and challenging period. Paul enjoys widespread respect and support across the industry and is an ideal successor to David."

Dr Bryans also welcomed Tomas Pietrangeli, MD of Arla Foods and Andrew McInnes, MD of Muller Milk & Ingredients, newly elected Vice-Chairs of Dairy UK; "Tomas and Andrew have a wealth of expertise and insight behind them, all of which will be important in helping Dairy UK to create a positive environment for the future of the industry.”


Dairy Is Fit For The Future - But Only If We Seize The Moment Globally

The dairy industry plays a key role in feeding the world and must respond dynamically and forcefully on a global level to those who challenge its nutritional and environmental integrity according to Dr Judith Bryans, President of the International Dairy Federation.

Speaking at the China Dairy Industry Association Annual Conference held in Hohhot, Inner Mongolia, Dr Bryans said increased demand for dairy products around the world is offering multiple opportunities that need to be grasped.

Dr Bryans said: "Milk is one of the most produced and valuable commodities traded globally. Day after day, dairy provides nutrition and value and as such it enriches people's lives.

"When the United Nations set in place its Sustainable Development Goals as a universal call to action it was clear that dairy was a part of the solution in terms of helping to deliver a number of these goals around nutrition, healthy people, a healthy planet, helping to lift people out of poverty and hunger and empowering females who can then empower their own families.

"So, if we are part of the solution then we must have opportunities and be ready and equipped to take them. We know the world's population is growing and will reach over 9 billion by 2050. We know that the world's demographics are changing and that soon we'll have more older people in the world than new births. We know that as people prosper their desire to consume dairy goes up.

"Dairy has a role in meeting their needs if we have the right products and ingredients and if people understand the benefits. To be fit for the future we need to continue to be innovative and make sure we have the right products available that are culturally acceptable, nutritious, safe, sustainable and affordable and delivered in a way that makes them relevant to the lives of our consumers. That will vary from country to country and continent to continent. And we must never get complacent and forget to tell consumers why we are important to them and the world.

"Dairy has long been recognised as providing high quality nutrition but the sector is now being attacked on this by anti-dairy groups and plant based alternatives. Our environmental credentials are also being questioned. As a sector, we know we have a strong case to put forward to policy makers as to why dairy farming and dairy products should form an integral part of feeding the world and helping to meet the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. It's essential that we do that at every opportunity"

Dr Bryans told the conference that there is optimism in world dairy markets at the moment but the caveat to that is that dairy markets have always experienced cyclical volatility. It can have profound effects on dairy farmers and processors alike.

She added: "We need to continue to develop a range of tools to help our dairy farmers through those difficult periods of time. "

In 2016, the FAO signed the Dairy Declaration of Rotterdam with the IDF in which the FAO recognised the importance of dairy, with the IDF committing to continuous improvement, with the declaration setting out a number of principles for doing so. A number of IDF member countries have endorsed the Dairy Declaration since then. Dr Bryans congratulated the China Dairy Industry Association for being the first country to endorse the principles. The Declaration aims to underline the integrated approach that the dairy sector takes to promote the sustainability of dairy systems, taking into consideration social, economic, health and environmental dimensions.

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