The Dairy Council | The Dairy Council Sets the Record Straight on Dairy Myths

With their unique nutrient profile and matrix, milk and dairy foods may play a neutral or protective role in long-term heart health, The Dairy Council said today.

2015 Dairy CouncilThe nutritional value of milk and dairy foods continue to be misunderstood and are often targeted in saturated fat reduction campaigns; however, multiple recent studies have shown that milk and dairy foods have neutral, and in some cases protective, associations with cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes.

Speaking at Food Matters Live, Dr Anne Mullen, Director of Nutrition at The Dairy Council, told delegates that the nutrient array and matrix of dairy is key to understanding dairy's relationship with certain long term health conditions.

Dr Anne Mullen said: "It is often thought that milk and dairy can play a part in developing health problems such as cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes due to its saturated fat content – but recent studies have shown that isn't the case.

"Saturated fat is actually an umbrella term to describe a family of individual saturated fatty acids and research has shown that these saturated fats behave differently in the body. When we appreciate their true complexity, a different picture emerges with regards to dairy.

"There are two saturated fatty acids found in dairy foods that are believed to be inversely associated with risk in developing type 2 diabetes, in addition to nutrients such as calcium and bioactive peptides which may also play a positive role in heart health. There is also recent research coming out that shows yogurt may actually have a protective effect in the development of type 2 diabetes.

"The reality is that the sheer complexity of saturated fat means that it is often misunderstood when assessing its impact on long term health and current public health guidelines, which looks at single nutrients as opposed to whole foods, have overlooked this.

"As the research field develops, it is important we communicate our knowledge with the public and health professionals. The continued misunderstanding of saturated fat sends a negative, and nutritionally incorrect, message about dairy and it's about time we debunked those myths."

Lydia Cooper, Nutrition Scientist at The Dairy Council, will also be speaking throughout the afternoon to discuss the relationship between milk and sports recovery. Research in the field has shown that milk can support an athlete's recovery through aiding rehydration, muscle repair and replenishing glycogen stores.

Lydia Cooper added: "Milk contains many of the nutrients needed for the body to adequately recover post-exercise. Studies have shown that milk may be more effective than sports drinks when it comes to rehydration. Milk has also been shown to help reduce muscle soreness following bouts of strenuous exercise."

Food Matters Live is the UK's largest cross-sector event that brings together the food and drink industry with nutrition and health professionals to address the relationship between food, health and nutrition. The event is being held at the Excel in London.


Key Decision Makers Discuss the Future of Dairy Exports

The UK dairy industry is ready to fully exploit dairy trade opportunities across the globe and strengthen its position as a global dairy player, said Dairy UK today.

Speaking at a breakfast seminar with leading politicians, including International Trade Minister Mark Garnier MP, Dairy UK outlined the sector's potential for global growth and the potential consequences of the Brexit negotiations, stressing that exports are a crucial part of developing and strengthening the dairy industry.

Dairy UK set out its vision for the industry in a briefing document for MPs, which demonstrated that the industry's path to global success relies on:

  • Maintaining uninterrupted access to the EU market;
  • Protecting existing trade agreements;
  • Developing new Free Trade Agreements (FTAs);
  • Avoiding border issues on the island of Ireland;
  • Working with Defra for optimal results on health certificates, inspection visits and promotion of the UK brand.

641f8a6b-3f5a-447c-8fa7-8d557d73cb67Whilst exiting the European Union will have a profound effect on the industry, taking the correct steps could help the industry become more resilient, competitive and profitable.

Neil Parish MP, Chair of the Efra Select Committee, said: "The Brexit referendum set the country on an unexpected course. The negotiations with the European Union will be complex, however food and drink exports are a crucial part of our economy and we must make sure the Government uses all of its resources to promote and boost trade.

"As a life-long champion of the UK dairy industry, I am anxious to protect its interests. The food and farming sector must make itself heard and I welcome Dairy UK's initiative to showcase the industry's achievements in dairy exports and to highlight what we can and must do to support it in the coming years."

Dr Judith Bryans, Chief Executive of Dairy UK, said: "As part of a billion strong global dairy community working together on nutrition, standards and sustainability, the UK dairy industry provides consumers worldwide with the foods and ingredients they want and love in a way that protects our planet for future generations.

"Dairy UK has a very diverse membership, with some companies focusing on developing the domestic market and some focusing on expanding their presence abroad. For those looking to access new foreign markets, collaborative work with the Government is key.

"In January 2016, Dairy UK published an Export Strategy which identified a comprehensive list of steps which could help foster growth and boost our industry's competitiveness in the international market place. With global demand for dairy expected to grow by around 2% per annum over the next 10 years, the UK has a unique opportunity to step up, unlock new markets and increase dairy exports across the globe.

"In spite of the uncertainty created by the Brexit negotiations, the UK dairy industry is ready to rise up to the challenge and strengthen its position as a global dairy player."

Guests at the breakfast included Mark Garnier MP (Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department of International of Trade), Neil Parish (Chair of the Efra Select Committee), Heather Wheeler MP, Sheryll Murray MP, Margaret Ritchie MP, Simon Hoare MP, David Simpson MP, Jonathan Edwards MP, Tom Elliott MP, Dr Paul Monaghan MP and Rebecca Pow MP.

Click here to access the 'Brexit and the future of dairy exports' document.


Dairy UK Boss to Lead International Dairy Federation

Dr Judith Bryans, Chief Executive of Dairy UK, was elected President of the International Dairy Federation (IDF) yesterday at the World Dairy Summit held in Rotterdam, Netherlands.

Dr Bryans takes over from Dr Jeremy Hill of New Zealand who was elected at the 2012 World Dairy Summit in Cape Town, South Africa. In her new role, Dr Bryans will steer the work of IDF with the support of the IDF Board, the Science Programme Coordination Committee (SPCC), the IDF Head Office and IDF National Committees. She has been involved with IDF at all levels since 2005 and is a well-known figure in the IDF community.

Speaking after her election at the IDF Annual General Meeting, Dr Bryans said: "I am honoured and deeply grateful for the trust the IDF community has put in me to lead the organisation for the next four years. Jeremy has done a wonderful job over the last four years and we owe him our thanks for his dedication and the myriad of ways in which he's strengthened the organisation in his time as President.

"IDF is involved in every aspect of the dairy supply chain and is a trusted and respected partner for many international organisations such as the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) and Codex Alimentarius. With the support of the Board and the SPPC, I will work hard to strengthen our existing relationships and reach out to new global partners.

"The work of IDF is essential in creating a positive future for the dairy industry. It has a unique structure and shows what can be accomplished through global cooperation. With an unrivalled network of experts, we can pool our resources and expertise together to ensure the role of dairy is recognised properly at every level. We want to secure a positive and sustainable future for the dairy industry across the world and build on previous successes to put dairy front and centre in the global debate."

Dr Hill will hand over the IDF presidency to Dr Bryans at the World Dairy Summit on Wednesday 19th October.


Dairy Exports a Huge Opportunity for the Industry, Says Dairy UK

Dairy exports have a key role to play to boost the industry and foster growth, said Dairy UK to Defra Secretary of State Andrea Leadsom, yesterday.

The Secretary of State joined the Dairy UK Exporters' Group as a special guest at a meeting hosted by AHDB Dairy, to discuss the Government's export plan for food and drink. The meeting was an opportunity to discuss current and upcoming challenges linked to the Brexit negotiations and to reiterate Dairy UK's priorities in terms of trade and dairy exports.

Dr Judith Bryans, Chief Executive of Dairy UK, said: "The industry has been working hard to develop dairy exports and unlock new opportunities with countries around the world. The strategy we published earlier this year set out the necessary next steps to help the UK dairy industry take its proper place on the global market and we have already made significant progress working with Defra.

"However, with 80% of our dairy exports going to EU countries, it is absolutely vital that we should maintain our access to the EU market without any tariff or non-tariff barriers. The Government needs to maintain continuity and avoid any disruptions to existing trade partnerships.

"If we want to remain competitive, we need a level playing field with our European and global partners. When looking at food and drink regulations, the Government must make sure it does not inadvertently create non-tariff barriers which would hinder dairy companies' ability to export their products across the world. We need food and drink regulations on par with our competitors so we can strengthen our position in the global market."

Peter Dawson, Chair of the Dairy UK Exporters' Group, said: "The meeting was very positive with constructive discussions with the Secretary of State. We are confident that she fully appreciates our main points of concern and that she shares our enthusiasm and commitment to expanding dairy exports."


Dairy UK Tackles Antibiotics Use with New Training Programmes

Dairy UK has launched a package of new measures for the dairy industry as part as of its ongoing commitment to the prudent use of antibiotics and to delivering safe and wholesome dairy products to consumers across the UK.

The package features three projects, including the brand new 'MilkSure' training programme for dairy farmers. Developed in conjunction with the British Cattle Veterinary Association (BCVA), MilkSure is a comprehensive programme covering all technical and practical factors relevant to the use of antibiotics on dairy farms which aims to safeguard residue free milk. To ensure maximum impact, vets will take the lead in working through the training programme with farmers.

The second major component of the package is a revamped teat sealant training programme, initially undertaken in 2012. Participating milk purchasers will invite their supplying farmers to receive refresher training from their vet on the correct infusion and removal of teat sealant. The programme will help to protect product quality and reinforce the industry's evolution towards selective dry cow therapy.

Unveiling the initiative, Dr Judith Bryans, Chief Executive of Dairy UK said:

"The UK dairy industry has always operated to the highest standards of animal health and food safety, advocating a responsible and prudent use of antibiotics. However, we cannot be complacent and, as antimicrobial resistance becomes a growing concern, we want to take industry standards even further and raise the bar for good practice on farm.

"In conjunction with our industry partners, we have put together a package of measures to improve the approach to the use of antibiotics on farm and reduce potential residues in raw milk. This will give consumers and customers even greater confidence that British milk is a pure and wholesome food.

"We strongly believe that a more informed use of antibiotics will lead to a reduced use. These new measures are designed to get vets, farmers and milk purchasers working together for optimal results. Only by drawing upon all elements of the supply chain can we move forward and I would urge all parties to take advantage of these initiatives.

"I would like to thank all organisations that have contributed to the development of the package, including milk purchasers, the BCVA, the Responsible Use of Medicines in Agriculture Alliance (RUMA) and animal health companies."

Owen Atkinson, MilkSure project leader, said: "Cattle vets welcome the opportunity to work closely with others in the dairy supply chain to ensure the milk we produce in the UK is of the highest standard. MilkSure training and accreditation will benefit farmers and consumers, ensuring that veterinary medicine use in dairy cows is both efficient and safe."

Tim Hampton, Chair of Dairy UK's Antibiotics Working Group and Arla Foods representative said: "As co-sponsor, Arla strongly supports this initiative and we are exploring ways to maximise engagement of farmers in this programme."

Speaking on behalf of Muller Milk & Ingredients, Matthew Curry, agriculture manager said: "We have sponsored this initiative as we believe training on antibiotic protocols, in conjunction with the farmer's vet is key to ensuring our suppliers meet the rising expectations for product safety and quality. We will be encouraging our supplying farmers to participate in MilkSure."

Speaking on behalf of Dairy Crest, Gary Carcary said: "Antibiotic resistance is one of the greatest threats to global health today. Dairy Crest is delighted to be a partner in this important training initiative with the aim of progressing best practice at farm level."

RUMA Secretary General, John FitzGerald, said: "RUMA encourages training in the responsible use of medicines and was pleased to support the development of the MilkSure initiative which will help UK dairy farmers to continue providing safe, wholesome milk from their farms."

Speaking on behalf of MilkSure sponsors, Zoetis, Technical vet Judith Roberts said: "'We are delighted to be sponsoring such an excellent initiative at an important time within the dairy industry. As a pharmaceutical company we want to ensure that our products are used correctly and appropriately and as such this initiative is vital to help train farmers and provide access to information and resources that enable them to understand and carry this out using the medicines that their animals need."

Details on the measures are available at www.dairyuk.org/tackling-antibiotics.


The Dairy Council | It's Time to Get Shaking for Milk!

Learning good lifestyle habits, such as being active and eating the right types and amounts of food and drink is key to helping children maintain a healthy weight throughout their life.

2015 Dairy CouncilFor World School Milk Day 2016, The Dairy Council is calling on primary schools across the country to join them for a dance to celebrate the white stuff on Wednesday 28th September. As part of a nationwide competition, teachers are encouraged to tweet a video of their class moving and shaking in celebration of milk. The Dairy Council will award their favourite videos with prizes for their efforts.

Schools can also get involved in the milk celebrations by designing a backdrop for the video or a display for the classroom wall. Other activities include downloading a presentation from The Dairy Council's website to teach the class about the benefits of milk; holding a pop quiz or other competitions in class; or making milkshakes.

Primary school children need lots of nutrients and energy from their food for growth and development, and their requirements are proportionally higher in relation to their body size than adults.

Milk and dairy foods provide calcium and protein for growing bodies and help to protect teeth against dental cavities. A small carton of semi-skimmed milk can provide 42-52% of 4-10 year olds recommended daily intake for calcium and 24-35% of their recommended protein intake.

Another important but less known nutrient, iodine, is found in significant amounts in milk. It is needed for growth and brain development in children and a glass of milk provides about 52-57% of their recommended intake.

Erica Hocking, Senior Nutritionist at The Dairy Council, said: "At primary school age, it is essential that children have a healthy, balanced diet and get plenty of physical activity to help them maintain a healthy weight as they get older.

"Research shows that milk consumption may have a beneficial effect on growth and body weight. Schools have a key role to play there and should try to encourage children to replace sugary drinks with milk or water.

"This year, we are asking schools to get moving and shaking in celebration of all things milk. Just tweet us footage of your class strutting their stuff for World School Milk Day and you will be in with the chance of winning some milk shakers for the entire dance troop. We have even created a dance tutorial video which is available on our website and YouTube channel to inspire teachers to get moving – check it out. We can't wait to see all of the videos."

How to enter the competition

  1. Film your class dancing in celebration of World School Milk Day 2016.
  2. Tweet your video with the hashtags #WSMD16 & #MilkShakeMoves during the competition period.
  3. Winners will be chosen at random.
  4. Information about the competition is available at www.milk.co.uk/consumers/page.aspx?intPageID=1086.

Doorstep Awards Recognise Milk Champions

Milk and dairy enthusiasts, Charlie Thomas and Roseanne McEwan, have won the 'Milkman of the Year' and the 'Marketing & Promotion Award' respectively, in recognition of their outstanding contribution to the UK dairy industry.

DoorstepAwardsThe much-coveted awards were announced during a festive evening at Haydock Park, Merseyside, for the Dairy UK Doorstep Conference which saw representatives from across the industry come together to celebrate the great tradition of doorstep delivery.

Charlie Thomas, aged 24, was nominated by his Creamline customers and judged by a panel from Dairy UK. The award, sponsored by Delamere Dairy, showcases the very best in the industry, and provides a great opportunity to remind the public of the heritage of the milkman and how they are a unique part of British culture. Come rain or shine, Creamline milkman Charlie Thomas has delivered hundreds of pints of milk a week to his customers in Sale & Trafford.

Charlie said: "I am absolutely delighted to have won the title. I would like to thank all who have nominated me and thank them for their support. There's no other job quite like it. I know my area like the back of my hand and it's always good to see familiar faces on my route. The community I know and work with are what get me out there – it's great that I have a job that means I'm so directly connected with my customers. I started to accompany my father on his milk rounds when I was 8 years old – and I learnt that a milkman must be punctual, have an eye for detail, and no matter the weather, smile."

Dr Judith Bryans, Chief Executive of Dairy UK, said: "Charlie is what doorstep delivery is all about. His customers are his friends and he always goes that extra mile to provide them with great products and service. He relishes the community spirit and provides trustworthy doorstep delivery service that many of our customers, especially the housebound, rely on."

The second winner of the evening, Roseanne McEwan, Brand Development Manager at Cotteswold Dairy, joined in 2015 and has used initiative to create a brand identity which has made a real impact on the business.

Roseanne said: "I am over the moon to receive this award and thank you for this recognition. I came into my role with no previous experience in brand development and marketing, but I have really enjoyed the creative process of developing a brand identity and creating a whole branding package for a product that I truly believe in."

Dr Judith Bryans added: "Roseanne is creative, positive and a real driving force when it comes to marketing. She has thrown herself into her role and created a strong brand identity for her company that she should be proud of."

Nigel Byham, Dairy UK Board member and Director of Byham's Dairy, said: "Charlie and Roseanne are great ambassadors for our industry – they demonstrate an unwavering passion and enthusiasm for their jobs and I would like to congratulate them both."

Steven O'Connor, National Account Manager at Delamere Dairy, said: "We are delighted to sponsor the awards this year – both of which recognise the outstanding contribution that people across the industry have made. Doorstep delivery plays such a crucial role in our local communities and creative marketing initiatives are an important way of setting out a successful vision for the future."

The runner up for Milkman of the Year 2016 was Fred Tandy from Cotteswold Dairy, and runner up for the Marketing & Promotion award was Steve Neary, General Sales Manager from Creamline Dairies.


Dairy Industry Celebrates the Doorstep Sector

The dairy industry has come together today to celebrate the great British tradition of doorstep delivery.

There are few things more quintessentially British than our milkmen and women. Although their job is to deliver the daily pinta, they are well known for providing a lifeline for the elderly, the housebound and the vulnerable and regularly go beyond the call of duty to ensure the safety of our neighbourhoods.

Dr Judith Bryans, Chief Executive of Dairy UK, said: "Although the market has changed over the years, milkmen and women across the country are still considered to be cornerstones of their local communities. Dairy UK is delighted to have brought back the Doorstep Conference – today has given us a platform to discuss many important areas in our industry. I would like to thank all of our speakers who have shared their insights and expertise with us this afternoon.

"The British public's love for dairy products is as strong as ever. Dairy has so much to be proud of and through working together and effective communication our industry can make a difference in a very positive way."

Throughout the afternoon, speakers from across the dairy industry addressed a number of topics. The session began with a look at how to promote the health benefits of dairy and also addressed the growing importance of digital communications and increasing online visibility.

Lydia Cooper, Nutrition Scientist at The Dairy Council, said: "Milk and dairy products provide an array of nutrients to the UK diet. In a time when the media sends mixed messages about milk and dairy, it has never been more important to showcase the nutritional value of these versatile and affordable products to the general public."

Roseanne McEwan, Brand Development Manager at Cotteswold Dairy, added: "Regardless of our thoughts on social media, it's here to stay and we need to embrace the change and become part of it. When social media is used in the right way, it provides a human face to businesses and builds an audience which enables greater connections and relationships. It is also highly targeted which helps lead to direct sales and get your name out there and known."

Delegates also listened to talks on business development, particularly on how marketing and promotion can increase customer numbers, as well as how to tackle the challenges surrounding health and safety.

Nicki Hargreaves, HR & HS Manager at Creamline Dairies, said: "Health and Safety is often a dreaded topic within the world of work, but it shouldn't be. The new sentencing guidelines provide simple steps for small companies and milkmen to ensure they are covered and their team are safe at work."

Arthur Dunne, Managing Director at Pensworth Dairies, added: "Pensworth fully supports the Dairy UK Doorstep Event. It's an opportunity to contribute and review best practices with other dairy companies and learn from this. The doorstep business for Pensworth provides a valuable home delivery service to our customers. It maintains and creates job opportunities, as well as supporting the cost infrastructure of the dairy."

The event, which took place at Haydock Park, Merseyside, was open to all BMB, wholesalers, processors and suppliers. Sponsors included Pensworth Dairies, Delamere Dairy, Wenlock Spring, and DairyData.


New Resources for Dairy UK's Trolley Team

Trolley Team has launched new resources to increase its visibility and help the industry save up to £1.45 million per year.

trolley team coverTrolley Team works in partnership with organisations that help reduce losses by recovering missing equipment and preventing further theft and misappropriation.

In a positive step for the industry, today the Trolley Team has launched a new website, brochure, and identification booklet to encourage members to pull their resources together to provide an efficient and effective cost-saving service.

Trolley Team keeps track of any trolley theft or misappropriation and identifies offenders of milk trolley misuse. If offenders choose not to comply, Trolley Team and its partners have the authority to issue fines on-the-spot to perpetrators and take legal action if required.

The Team covers 140,000 miles counting 315,000 trolleys each year. Activities include inspections at member and non-member processing sites, distribution depots, bottle milk buyers, airports, exhibition centres, shopping centres and metal recycling centres.

Ian Singleton, Chairman of Trolley Team, said: "Trolley Team is a unique cost-saving initiative and an excellent example of industry collaboration. By recovering missing company property and returning trolleys to their rightful owners, we have been able to save the industry £1.45 million per year.

"The new website provides practical advice on how to identify and report missing trolleys and new brochures to spread the word about the team's activities and goals."

Dr Judith Bryans, Chief Executive of Dairy UK, said: "Since its creation fourteen years ago, over £75 million worth of assets have been returned to members. Our new resources will give more visibility to an already extremely productive initiative. Today marks a positive step for the UK dairy industry – this scheme is simple, yet effective and must be showcased properly."

All resources, including the 2016 Brochure and the Identification Booklet, can be downloaded from the Trolley Team website at www.trolleyteam.co.uk/resources. Hard copies are also available for members.


Dairy UK Statement on Childhood Obesity Strategy

Commenting on the Childhood Obesity Strategy published today, Dr Judith Bryans, Chief Executive of Dairy UK, said:

"It is a shame to see yogurt portrayed in a negative light again. According to National Diet and Nutrition Survey (NDNS) data used by both the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN) and Public Health England itself in its call for evidence, the category including yogurt, fromage frais and dairy desserts only accounts for 6% of added sugar intake for children aged 4 to 10, against 14% for sugar and chocolate confectionery and 9% for cakes and pastries. Yet this strategy brings yogurt to the fore when it should be at the bottom of list. Yogurt is a nutrient-rich food and contains many other nutrients, not just sugar.

"The dairy industry is a responsible industry whose number one priority is to deliver wholesome and nutritious foods to consumers and has already taken significant steps over the years to meet consumer expectations through reformulation. We will seek urgent clarification on whether these new reformulation targets will apply to imported products as well as domestic products. The question of whether consumers are willing to accept changes in the taste of their favourite products is an important factor when reformulating food products. We need a level playing field for both domestic and imported products lest consumers abandon domestic products in favour of imported products, which would defeat the purpose of the strategy and penalise the UK industry.

"Nutrition policies which target individual nutrients do not always provide a balanced view of foods. We need to look at the big picture when it comes to nutrition policies and finally start looking at dietary patterns as a whole."

National Diet & Nutrition Survey | Added sugar intake from food groups

Age 4-10
Confectionery (sugar + chocolate) 14%
Cakes & morning goods: 9%
Breakfast cereals: 8%
Biscuits 8%
Sweet spreads: 7%
Yogurts: 6%
Puddings: 3%
Ice cream: 4%

Age 11-18
Confectionery (sugar + chocolate) 13%
Sweet spreads: 8%
Biscuits 7%
Cakes & morning goods: 6%
Breakfast cereals: 6%
Ice cream: 3%
Yogurts: 3%
Puddings: 2%


Entries Open for Doorstep Awards

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Categories: 2016


Cheese Champion Recognised by British Cheese Board Award

BCBlogoCMYKCheese expert Nigel Pooley has received The British Cheese Board (BCB) Nantwich Show Cheese Industry Award in recognition of his invaluable contribution to the UK dairy industry.

Nigel has worked in the dairy industry for 53 years, specialising in grading cheese to ensure that the product on the supermarket shelf is of the highest standard. During his career, Nigel has worked for Wkye Farms, Chewton Dairy Farms, Cricket St Thomas Estate, St Ivel and Unigate Creameries.

Although he officially retired in April this year from his role as Quality Development Manager, Nigel – affectionately known as "Nige the Nose" – is still lending his olfactory powers to family-run Somerset cheese-makers, Wyke Farms, where he has worked for almost 20 years.

Throughout his career, Nigel has graded more than 1.5 million tonnes of Cheddar and due to his unique level of expertise, Wyke Farms ensured his nose was insured for £5 million.

The award was presented on Tuesday afternoon by celebrity chef Sean Wilson at the Nantwich Cheese Show, the largest international cheese show in the world.

CMADlogoAward-winner, Nigel Pooley, said: "Cheese has been my lifelong passion and it is an absolute honour, and complete surprise, to receive this year's Cheese Industry Award. The UK produces some of the finest cheeses in the world and I am incredibly proud to be a part of our great smelling industry."

Dr Judith Bryans, Chief Executive of Dairy UK, said: "Over the course of a five-decade long career, Nigel has been a passionate champion of British cheese. He has done, and continues to do, a tremendous job in ensuring the cheese we eat is of the best possible quality. He is widely recognised throughout the industry and many have gained from his insight and expertise."

Bruce Macdonald, Chairman of the International Cheese Awards, added: "Nigel can only be described as one of the UK's biggest cheese enthusiasts. Throughout his career, Nigel has held a number of esteemed positions and it is great to see him recognised for his lifetime commitment to British cheese. Nigel is one of the best known and admired people in our industry, and is thoroughly deserving of this recognition."

Categories: 2016


May Government: What's Next for Dairy?

The last three weeks have been akin to a wild rollercoaster ride for UK policymakers, with the unforeseen result of the EU referendum followed by a string of unexpected developments within both the Conservative and the Labour parties. As Prime Minister Theresa May puts the final touches to her new Government, Dairy UK Chief Executive Dr Judith Bryans takes a look at top issues for the UK dairy industry.

 Focus on dairy trade

With exports high on the agenda, establishing close collaborations with the new Brexit Secretary and International Trade Secretary will be a top priority. Speaking to the BBC this morning, Mr Fox said the UK had "tremendous opportunities to increase [its] global profile and we should be extraordinarily optimistic and confident about the future."

With considerable uncertainty and challenges in the wake of the referendum and a brand new Government, many are anxious to find out more about Mr Davis's plans for the Brexit negotiations. In an interview with ConservativeHome on Monday, Mr Davis said he was optimistic about the UK's future post-Brexit and believed the UK would remain in the Single Market.shutterstock 247955950 small

"The ideal outcome (and in my view the most likely, after a lot of wrangling) is continued tariff-free access," he said. "Once the European nations realise that we are not going to budge on control of our borders, they will want to talk, in their own interest. There may be some complexities about rules of origin and narrowly-based regulatory compliance for exports into the EU, but that is all manageable."

He also pointed out that should the EU refuse to budge on Single Market access, the UK could support its industry by using income from tariffs on EU imports.

Saying triggering Article 50 should be delayed until the end of 2016 after in-depth consultation with devolved Governments and other stakeholders including trade bodies, he added trade deal negotiations with major partners such as the US or China should start right away, with the aim of concluding them within two years, maybe even before negotiations with the EU are complete. "It should be clear from all this that Brexit favours an export-based growth strategy, and that should be what we embrace," he said.

Dr Bryans made it clear that trade was a core element of the industry's future. "The UK dairy industry has tremendous potential for growth on the global stage," she said, "and the Government must provide the right framework to help make our sector more resilient, competitive and profitable.

"With so many opportunities for new markets arising across the world, the Government must act swiftly to conclude free-trade agreements with major partners lest we get left out of the global game. And it goes without saying that we must have continued access to the EU market, our main trading partner. We will need robust trade agreements which remove tariff and non-tariff barriers to allow us to take our place in the global market and be a strong and credible competitor."

A level playing field for food and farming

The dairy industry will expect newly appointed Defra Secretary of State Andrea Leadsom to work around the clock to protect the interests of the food and farming sector, both at domestic level and within the scope of the Brexit negotiations.

The broad outlines of the Conservative Party's policy on agriculture have been relatively constant over the past few years favouring greater market orientation and a reduction in subsidies and market support; linking the provision of support to the provision of public goods by farmers; and a science based approach to the approval of new technologies.

However, in the absence of the framework provided by the CAP, the UK Government will have to determine the amount of resources to be allocated to food and farming as well as whether to continue or phase out income payments, and if the latter, over what timescale.

"With volatility now an inherent part of the market, the dairy industry must focus on being more competitive and finding the right tools to manage the impact of volatility", Dr Bryans explained. "It will be essential for Andrea Leadsom to keep working closely with the industry to help drive it forward and build an environment which facilitates growth and development and reduces the burden of regulation.

"The dairy industry has serious challenges ahead but also many opportunities and we ask Mrs Leadsom and her team to ensure a smooth and seamless transition for our industry throughout the Brexit negotiations. There is much at stake and we count on Defra's support to foster growth and success in our great UK dairy industry."

Given the tremendous impact of the European Union on food and drink legislation, the new Government will also have to provide a level playing field with fair regulations on par with competitors abroad.

Putting dairy foods front and centre

Relationships between the dairy industry and the Department of Health and its agencies have been fraught with tension over the last three years, with several campaigns circulating negative messages about dairy products. The recent Eatwell Guide debacle coupled with the misleading Sugar App added fuel to the fire and generated significant anger, especially at a time when Defra and other Government agencies called for industry growth and development.shutterstock 274846961 small

Nevertheless, as Jeremy Hunt stays at the helm of Richmond House, the dairy industry is hoping for a fresh start and renewed discussions on the role of dairy in public health.

Dr Bryans reiterated the industry's commitment to driving home the health messages. "Everything we do, every day, is underpinned by the simple message that dairy products have a crucial role to play as part of a healthy and balanced diet and lifestyle," she pointed out. "We say it, Defra and the Dairy APPG say it, and an ever growing list of countries and members of the scientific community say it. Yet in the UK, we have had to fight our own health authorities almost daily as they ignore the science highlighting the benefits of dairy.

"We sincerely hope that the momentous changes in the UK's political life can be an opportunity to start afresh and build constructive exchanges with the Department of Health to put dairy foods front and centre in the public health debate."

A skilled workforce for dairy

So far, the Government has declined to address directly the question of EU workers living in the UK.
Dairy UK is surveying members to get a clear picture of the proportion and the role of the European workforce in dairy processing and manufacturing. "The UK dairy industry from farm to fridge benefits from the free movement of non-UK born EU labour," said Dr Bryans. "Access to a skilled workforce is crucial for our industry to remain competitive and must be a top priority in any Brexit negotiations."

Bright future for dairy

Dr Bryans concluded by saying that regardless of the political context, the industry's main duty was to consumers. "The UK dairy industry is adaptable, resilient and determined," she said, "with the skills and innovation to rise to the many challenges we encounter. We operate in a global dairy marketplace and we will keep showing our unwavering commitment to give the public nothing but the best of UK dairy. We will continue to liaise with the UK Government, devolved administrations and all relevant organisations to promote the interests of the UK dairy sector and help to steer our industry in the right direction."

Categories: 2016


Dairy UK Statement on New Government Posts

Welcoming the new cabinet and ministerial posts announced by Prime Minister Theresa May today, Dairy UK Chief Executive Dr Judith Bryans said:

"We congratulate Mrs May on her appointment as Prime Minister and we ask her to help us shape a better future for the dairy industry by securing robust trade deals, implementing fair food and drink legislation on par with our competitors and supporting industry competitiveness with easy access to a skilled workforce.

"The UK dairy industry has tremendous potential for growth in the global stage and the Government must provide the right framework to help make our sector more resilient, competitive and profitable. With so many opportunities for new markets arising across the world, the Government must act swiftly to conclude free-trade agreements with major partners lest we get left out of the global game. And it goes without saying that, given the intricate links between the UK and the EU, both in terms of players and products, we must have continued access to the EU market. We will need robust trade agreements which remove tariff and non-tariff barriers to allow us to take our place in the global market and be a strong and credible competitor.

"Given the tremendous impact of the European Union on food and drink legislation, the new Government will have to take every precaution to provide a level playing field with fair regulations on par with our competitors abroad. Similarly, access to a skilled workforce is crucial for our industry to remain competitive and must be a top priority in any Brexit negotiations.

"We congratulate Mrs Leadsom on her appointment as Defra Secretary of State and we particularly look forward to building a strong working relationship with her and continuing our constructive collaboration with Defra officials. The dairy industry has serious challenges ahead but also many opportunities and we ask Mrs Leadsom and her team to ensure a smooth and seamless transition for our industry throughout the Brexit negotiations. Dairy is vital to Britain's economy, environment and diet and therefore it is clearly within the Government's interest to ensure that this industry is well-supported. There is much at stake and we count on Defra's support to foster growth and success in our great UK dairy industry.

"Our industry is adaptable, resilient and determined with the skills and innovation to rise to the many challenges we encounter. We will continue to liaise with the UK Government, devolved administrations and all relevant organisations to promote the interests of the UK dairy sector and help to steer our industry in the right direction."

Categories: 2016

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