How to keep your milk supply fresh and healthy in New Zealand
- by admin
New Zealand’s milk supply has been in a slump for the past few years due to climate change and rising costs.
But now, scientists are warning that milk prices could rise as much as 70 per cent in some parts of the country.
National Dairy Products is leading a research project to determine how much of its milk will remain on shelves and how it will be marketed.
It has been working with farmers, scientists and health authorities to develop a way to keep milk fresh and in stores, with the hope of reducing demand for imported products and boosting production of its own products.
The project is led by the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food.
The department has invested $40 million to develop the research, with a team of experts working to produce a report in June.
But farmers and dairy farmers are concerned about the project’s cost.
“The cost is a lot more than just the cost of the research project itself, and what that research will do, that will be the final cost for the dairy farmers and farmers in the region,” says David Meech, a dairy farmer in the Otago region.
“There’s no money in this, so it will come down on our shoulders.”
“It will have an impact on our market and on the local farmers, who will have to have more money in their pockets to buy the milk that they want.”
As the research is underway, farmers in New York City are already starting to plan ahead.
A team of scientists from the Cornell University and the University of Rochester have been studying milk prices in the US, which has a similar impact to New Zealand, where dairy farmers may have to pay more for milk as global warming worsens.
This could affect many of New Zealands dairy farmers.
The dairy industry relies heavily on imported milk.
About 80 per cent of Kiwis are now dependent on imported dairy products.
The Cornell researchers are also looking at how milk prices will change in Australia and South Africa.
Australia, a major exporter of dairy products to New York and the United States, is already seeing a dramatic rise in prices for milk, including imported, as the country prepares to adopt a milk price cap.
South Africa is also preparing to adopt its own milk price caps, which are expected to impact farmers and retailers across the country, and could increase costs for milk buyers.
While dairy farmers have a right to demand fair prices for their milk, the research suggests there is an important role for the government to play.
In a statement, the department said it was “currently undertaking research into the implications of increasing dairy milk prices, including the impacts on consumers and the dairy industry in New England”.
“In addition to providing dairy farmers with the tools to reduce milk prices through increased supply and competition, the dairy supply chain is essential for the continued supply of high quality milk to our customers,” it said.
Topics:sustainability,food-and-beverage,food,health,youth,dairy-and -milk,tas,canberra-2600,act,new-zealandMore stories from New Zealand
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