Dairy media coverage of the impact of coronavirus

Michael Oakes on BBC Countryfile 26.4.20_73334

During the coronavirus outbreak and subsequent lockdown, the dairy sector has been hit badly.

The almost complete closure of foodservice and hospitality outlets has meant the loss of market for around eight million litres of milk every week. Already, a quarter of dairy farmers in England Wales have been hit financially as a result.

The NFU dairy and press teams have been working hard to highlight across all media platforms the calls on government to support the industry. 

With more than 50 articles, radio and TV interviews reaching more than 50 million people, here's a round-up of some of the coverage to date (last updated 1 May).

National press coverage:

Countryfile: BBC One, 26 April

Coronavirus: Hardship payment for dairy farmers consideredBBC News, 28 April 

Farmers call for urgent action to prevent dairy sector 'catastrophe'Press Association, 15 April  

Dairy farmers forced to pour milk down the drainThe Daily Telegraph, 9 April 

Dairy farmers forced to pour milk down the drain; Lack of demand due to the closure of restaurants and coffee shops has put many dairy farmers under severe financial stressThe Daily Telegraph, 9 April 

UK dairy farmers on the brink: Industry leaders in urgent plea to government for supportDaily Express, 8 April

PLUS:

  • BBC Radio 5 Live Wake up to Money, 7 April: Michael Oakes interviewed
  • Daily Mail, 7 April: Michael Oakes quoted
  • Sky News, 8 April: Michael Oakes interviewed
  • BBC News Online, 9 April: NFU quoted
  • Metro newspaper, 9 April: Minette Batters quoted
  • The Times, 14 April: Minette Batters quoted
  • Sky News, 17 April: Minette Batters interviewed
  • Financial Times, 20 April: Michael Oakes quoted
  • Daily Express, 21 April: Michael Oakes quoted
  • BBC Countryfile, 27 April: Michael Oakes and Abi Reader both interviewed
  • BBC News Online, 28 April: NFU member Joe Stanley quoted
  • BBC Radio 4 Today, 29 April: Minette Batters interviewed

Sky News interview with Minette on coronavirus impact on dairy_73080

Regional press coverage:

County dairy farmers fearing financial ruin

Leicester Mercury • 21 April 2020

Leicestershire dairy farmers 'are hitting rock bottom' due to Covid-19

Leicestershire Live • 20 April 2020

Warning of looming dairy farm catastrophe

The Journal (Newcastle) • 18 April 2020

Farmers need more help to avoid milk going down the drain - Farmers' Union

Malvern Gazette • 16 April 2020

Act now to avert a rural catastrophe, says NFU

Western Daily Press • 16 April 2020

NFU wants crisis meeting with government for dairy farmers

South West Farmer • 14 April 2020 

Dairy farms demand urgent action to save businesses as milk demand dries up

East Anglian Daily Times • 11 April 2020

BBC Radio Coventry & Warwickshire : 9 April, 15:39 PM GMT

Dairy farms demand urgent action to save businesses as milk demand dries up

East Anglian Daily Times • 9 April 2020

CORONAVIRUS: Live updates from North and East Yorkshire

Wiltshire Gazette & Herald • 9 April 2020

Farmers face huge milk price reduction

News & Star • 24 March 2020

Trade press coverage:

NFU writes 2,230 letters to MPs calling for support for British dairy industry

Agriland.co.uk • 30 April 2020

Farmers' union urges government to save British dairy sector

EFeedLink • 29 April 2020

10 foods affected by the coronavirus pandemic

The Grocer • 29 April 2020

NFU urges MPs to pressure Government to support British dairy industry

Food Management Today • 29 April 2020

Coronavirus: Over 2,000 letters sent to MPs urging dairy sector action

Farming UK • 29 April, 2020

Dairy |  Coronavirus: Hardship payment for dairy farmers considered

EdairyNews • 28 April 2020

MPs urged to put pressure on government to support British dairy industry

The Cattle Site • 28 April 2020

Dairy farmers urged to submit accounts of their losses

Farmers Guide • 23 April 2020

Coronavirus: Chancellor asked to intervene in dairy crisis

Farmers Weekly • 23 April 2020

'Urgent Government action' needed to protect dairy sector from irreversible damage, warns farming unions

Farmers Guardian • 21 April 2020

Dairy industry support is a positive first step but sector isn’t out of the woods

The Grocer • 20 April 2020

Defra rules out swift coronavirus cash injection to prop up dairy sector

Farmers Weekly • 17 April 2020

‘Desperate’ dairy sector calls for more government support

The Grocer • 17 April 2020

Coronavirus pushes dairy industry towards ‘national catastrophe’

FoodManufacture.co.uk • 15 April 2020

Defra rules out swift coronavirus cash injection to prop up dairy sector

Farmers Weekly • 15 April 2020

Coronavirus: NFU and dairy industry united behind urgent call for action

Farming Life • 15 April 2020

UK's National Farmers Union calling for Covid-19 dairy "crisis" meeting with government

Just-Food • 14 April 2020

Coronavirus: Farmers dump milk as supply chain backs up

Farmers Weekly • 10 April 2020

Dairy industry needs support, say industry bodies

Speciality Food Magazine • 9 April 2020

Calls for ‘crisis meeting’ to save dairy sector

Farmers Guide • 9 April 2020

NFU calls for urgent ‘crisis meeting’ with Eustice over dairy slump

The Grocer • 9 April 2020

Crisis meeting with Defra Secretary sought to save UK dairy sector

Business & Innovation Magazine • 9 April 2020

Crisis meeting with Defra Secretary sought to save UK’s iconic dairy sector

Farming Life • 9 April 2020

NFU calls for crisis meeting as UK dairy faces 'severe financial pressure'

Farming UK • 9 April 2020

Dairy sector calls on government for financial support

The Grocer • 7 April 2020

Coronavirus: Farmers dump milk as supply chain backs up

Farmers Weekly • 6 April 2020

Coronavirus: Pensworth seeks government loan to pay for milk

Farmers Weekly • 3 April 2020

How disastrous is the coronavirus crisis for dairy farmers and processors?

The Grocer • 3 April 2020

Coronavirus: Pensworth seeks government loan to pay for milk

Farmers Weekly • 31 March 2020

Increasing UK milk price gap indicates a broken market

The Cattle Site • 23 March 2020

Widening milk price gap highlights a broken market

Farmers Guardian • 23 March 2020

Coronavirus: Freshways first to cut price as demand slumps

Farmers Weekly • 19 March 2020

Freshways drops milk price by 2ppl and defers payment until May

Farmers Guardian • 19 March 2020

Coronavirus: Updates and advice

This news hub on NFUonline will be updated regularly to keep you up to date with what you need to know and how to deal with the various issues raised by coronavirus. Visit the hub.


Click here to use the NFU's COVID-19 business impact service.

By using this form, farmers and growers can provide information on any business-critical issues they have encountered, or expect to encounter, arising from the COVID-19 outbreak. The NFU will log this information and use it in an anonymised format to flag the key issues agriculture and horticulture are facing to government on a daily basis. However, no personal data will be shared with the government. The service is for all farmers and growers across the UK.

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