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Ex97
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Registered: 01-2004
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Re: Survey of marketing arrangements of dairy farmers


I can't be sure, but I would think that names and contact details etc of co-operative members are not available to third parties other than have been previously accepted.

It would be possible to advertise the online survey in their monthly publication, 'United News', something possibly too time consuming and expensive for your situation.

I'd say the only people who would have the time and inclination to fill out an online survey are those of us that trawl the various gems that the internet affords, such as Cowtalk.

14/9/2008, 14:27 Link to this post PM via Email   PM via Forum
 
Jeremy Franks Profile
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GP81

Registered: 09-2008
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Re: Survey of marketing arrangements of dairy farmers


Yes you may be correct about the time issue (and we do not have a budget for advertising). By the way, that is an impressive picture you have of a cyborg - Pickard I believe - I am a bit of a trekie myself, and thought the ST films are increasing variable in quality I always seem to go to see them!

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Dr Jeremy Franks, Newcastle University
14/9/2008, 16:47 Link to this post PM via Email   PM via Forum
 
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Ex97
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Registered: 01-2004
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Re: Survey of marketing arrangements of dairy farmers


I not much of a trekie actually, but I do have a bionic arm. emoticon

14/9/2008, 19:54 Link to this post PM via Email   PM via Forum
 
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EX91

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Survey of marketing arrangements of dairy farmers


 Jeremy - Why not try Ian Potter and see if he would put a link on his Daily update page might get some producers who are not Cowtalkers !
15/9/2008, 9:38 Link to this post PM via Email   PM via Forum
 
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EX93

Registered: 01-2006
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Re: Survey of marketing arrangements of dairy farmers


quote:

Jeremy Franks wrote:

As for 90+ responses being good for an on-line survey of dairy farmers. I was under the impression that many dairy farmers received detials of their monthly milk cheque "down the wire", which implies they are fully kitted out for internet access. Is this correct? If it is, then I would expect a high proportion to have access to the survey - whether they have the time and interest to complete it is another matter of course.
Thanks for your comments, all others are very welcome.




Mr Franks,

To be frank(pun intended), whats in it for me or any other dairy farmer to waste our time filling out your on-line survey? I too am amazed you have got 90 farmers to fill out your survey. As for the question....

"What main sources of advice did you use when deciding to sell milk to your current buyer?"

....the answer for me was my p4 maths teacher(after we wised up). After deregulation we had 2 choises 1. Stay with "The Board" of First milk as they are knowen now or 2. Wisemans. We discused it as a family and decided to "All stick together" and sign up with a co-op buyer. 11 months later after we wised up the the fact that "The Board" was dead and the co-op's were always going to be disadvantaged in over supplyed, supply and demand market, we did the wise thing for us to do, we bought out the final month of our inital 12 month contract and signed with Wiseman. The extra 1-2p.p.l. scince has been hard enough to "survive" on but it would have been harder without it!!!

In short there was only 2 options after deregulation, and a very limited chance of 3 now in my post code.


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15/9/2008, 10:10 Link to this post PM via Email   PM via Forum
 
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GP81

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Re: Survey of marketing arrangements of dairy farmers


Campletowncowboy
Ian Potter is a good idea, as his board will be read by all types of dairy farmers. I will look at his web page and then contact him. Many thanks.

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Dr Jeremy Franks, Newcastle University
15/9/2008, 10:12 Link to this post PM via Email   PM via Forum
 
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GP81

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Re: Survey of marketing arrangements of dairy farmers


James Johnson
this is another attempt to resond to whats in it for me, an earlier and long response was lost during the "downtime", so lets see if this get through first.

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Dr Jeremy Franks, Newcastle University
15/9/2008, 11:34 Link to this post PM via Email   PM via Forum
 
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GP81

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Re: Survey of marketing arrangements of dairy farmers


James Johnson
OK looks like I am in business again.
The earlier response that was lost made an effort to convey why the findings of this survey may be of importance and use to some dairy farmers. Clearly if you have only one effective milk buyer you must pressure that buyer - by belonging to its farmer supply group (if it does not have one, then by forming one). If you do have an effective choice of milk buyer, then the following factors are among the most important to know (not the only ones, I agree, but which would you list as the most important)
(1) the cost of your milk processors collecting, processing and packaging, and distribution system;
(2) the markets they sell your milk into, and the flexibility they have to quickly sell into the most profitable market (through flexible plant and contracts) adn
(3) the profit margin them make on each unit sold - often hard to find out and difficult to interpret from annual accounts, but perhaps this can be correlated to the brands they own, the market share of these brands, and their retail outlets (poor but sometimes useful proxies).
What does this tell you? Well, it gives an idea of what the milk buyer COULD pay you for your milk.
If you know this for all your effective milk buyers they surely this would help you make a marketing decision. I would hope all Farmer supply Groups are pressing their milk buyer to reveal these data - well it may be thought of as confidential, but afterall, the milk buyers have plenty of access to detailed farm survey information which is (or should be) similarly confidential.
(And the Tesco contracts now insist on knowing their local milk suppliers entire financial costing! - what do we know about Tesco's costs? - practically nothing)

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Dr Jeremy Franks, Newcastle University
15/9/2008, 11:44 Link to this post PM via Email   PM via Forum
 
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EX93

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Re: Survey of marketing arrangements of dairy farmers


Jeremy,

"Clearly if you have only one effective milk buyer you must pressure that buyer....."

 
You seen to have the usual academic's problem of being clever, but with no common scence!??! You are missing the point of it still being a buyers market,(though by a much reduced margin than it has been scince deregulation) in a supply and demand led market. So long as there is enough milk being produced that allows ANY retailer to undercut the market to gain buissness through a "lost leader" deal, then I am afraid the bottom rung of the ladder, the primery producer will be the one to suffer, in ANY supply and demand led market.

 Do you think the Goverment in this country want us to get a fair price for our milk??? Do they hell, they want cheap food and low inflation and they are too short sighted to care about the agricultural industry. If milk processors give ANY sign of colusion to force the price of milk up then the O.F.T come smashing down on them. Were is the O.F.T when middle-ground retailers start selling milk below the price the small independent retailers can BUY it at??? Come on Mr Franks, what happens next, the middle-ground takes buissness from the suppermarkets, they respond by undercutting the middle-ground to take it back(which they can do partley through economy of scale), then what happens, pressure is put onto the procesors, they get squeezed then they squeeze us!??! Try telling a corner shop owner he'll need to pay more for his milk because the farmers costs have gone up, when he could buy it from a suppermarkt just as cheaply......

If we could do as OPEC dose and regulate WORLD supply of milk as they do with oil then we could dictate the content of our milk contracts........if only.

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I dont want index, I dont want type, I want both!!!
15/9/2008, 13:42 Link to this post PM via Email   PM via Forum
 
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GP81

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Re: Survey of marketing arrangements of dairy farmers


James Jones
OK, first, not many people accuse me of being clever but having no common sense!

Second, you clearly feel there is nothing an individual dairy farmer can do to keep their FG price up, I disagree. Certainly collective action helps - if everybody is involved - but surely by now you can see that that ain't going to happen in UK milk.

OPEC works because it holds supply below demand - as you say. So, how can UK dairy farmers hold supply below demand. Two ways: (1) hold supply below UK processing capacity so processors pay higher prices to keep their capacity in use. OK short term but limited medium term impact because its easy to close surplus capacity causing a second round effect, namely farmers must lower production once more. How low do you need to go to keep Supply below Demand?

(2)Milk demand is 7 billion liquid, 3 billion branded and the rest 3.5 sold onto world markets as commodities - butter, SMP, cheese. So, continue to reduce supply until 3.5 billion litres of production "vanishes" (less any that in the meantime can be converted into a branded product).

So, the question is, for your OPEC model to work (leave aside its illegality for a moment!): which dairy farmers are among the 35-40% high cost or poor marketers (or perhaps a combination of both) producers who will be "forced" out BECAUSE of the OPEC "solution". If you JJ are, then you had better get out now before everybody sees the future and nobody will buy your cows+plant+farm or whatever.

I doubt the government cares about UK milk supply until it cannot get sufficint for its own tea and cheese and biscuits!

As for the role of the middle market - I take it your mean garage forecourts, inner-town expresses and corner shops - they have always charged a higher price for milk than the SM - (MDC reports etc). What has changed is Tesco Fresh'n'Lo discount brand - treating milk as a commodity with no enhanced sales features (local, green, filtered, etc). This will certainly take overall SM prices down if it continues. And they are entiled to continue if processors are willing to supply them. If SM are selling at "below cost" then the OFT needs to be informed - but how will they or we know, they dont reveal their costs by product line.

From my perspective, I don't want to see the milk sector decimated (or more correctly decimated times 4), so I fall back on looking at ways individual farmers can help themselves.

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Dr Jeremy Franks, Newcastle University
15/9/2008, 14:36 Link to this post PM via Email   PM via Forum
 


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