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Arla welcomes Asda’s price increase & commitment to sign-up to its farmer-owned marque

Press Release   •   Aug 17, 2015 16:01 BST

  • First major grocery retailer customer to agree nationwide pledge across all its liquid fresh milk
  • Industry-leading British cheddar labelling introduced to help customers to support British dairy farmers

Arla Foods UK has today confirmed that Asda’s increased price that it pays for milk, which came into effect this morning, will be shared directly with its farmer owners including 3,000 in the UK.

The retailer’s commitment to carry Arla’s new farmer-owned marque from the autumn on all of its own label fresh liquid milk along with new British cheddar labelling is also welcomed by Arla as a clear demonstration of Asda’s continuing and long-term commitment to British farming.

The product marque will offer consumers the opportunity to easily identify and trust that when they buy own label dairy products they are responsibly sourced from a farmer-owned business where all the profits go back to its owners, and has the highest expectations for animal welfare and environmental standards throughout its supply chain.

Asda is also reconfirming that it is committed to sourcing its own label cheddar using 100 per cent British milk from Arla.This will be supported by an industry-leading move with the introduction of new ‘Made with British Milk’ labelling on product packaging to provide clarity of sourcing.

Arla Foods amba farmer board director, Jonathan Ovens, met with Asda President and CEO, Andy Clarke, this morning to confirm the agreement, which includes new customer communication in all Asda stores to encourage its shoppers to buy British.

Jonathan Ovens commented: “As Arla farmer owners, we asked our major retailer customers to support our responsible sourcing principles and our transparent cooperative model.In announcing its wholesale price increase and carrying the farmer-owned marque, Asda has demonstrated its leadership in driving a solution to some of the challenges that the dairy industry is currently facing.

“Asda has a market driven wholesale price, mechanisms in place to deal with volatility and an ongoing long-term commitment for farmer owners, like myself.”

Andy Clarke added: “Asda was formed by dairy farmers, a heritage that we take seriously and that has informed our decision to make a substantial move to support farmers during the current global milk price crisis as well as agreeing a longer term package of measures going beyond liquid milk.”

Asda sources all of its milk from Arla across England, Scotland and Wales.Asda and Arla have had a ten year relationship which has made a substantial difference to its farmer owners and this is another significant milestone.

About Asda Stores Ltd:

Founded in the 1960s in Yorkshire, Asda is one of Britain’s leading retailers. It has more than 172,000 dedicated Asda colleagues serving customers from 614 stores, including 32 Supercentres, 337 Superstores, 34 Asda Living stores, 196 Supermarkets, 26 depots and seven recycling centres across the UK. Its main office is in Leeds, Yorkshire and its George clothing division is in Lutterworth, Leicestershire. More than 18 million people shop at Asda stores every week and 98 per cent of UK homes are served by  Asda joined Walmart, the world’s number one retailer, in 1999.

About Arla Foods UK:

Arla Foods is a global dairy company and cooperative owned by 13,500 dairy farmers circa 3,000 of whom are British.

Dating back to 1881, Arla’s purpose is to secure the highest value for its farmers’ milk, while creating opportunities for their growth. With production facilities in 11 countries and sales offices in a further 30, Arla is the world’s fifth largest dairy company and largest supplier of organic dairy products. Arla has a total of more than 18,000 colleagues and its products are sold under the well-known brands Arla®, Lurpak® and Castello® in more than 100 countries.

Arla Foods UK is the largest dairy company in the country and is home to leading dairy brands Anchor, Cravendale, and Lactofree. It has a turnover of £2.3 billion. As well as being number one in fresh liquid milk, butter, spreads and cream, Arla is the UK’s largest cheese manufacturer. It has also built the world’s largest fresh milk facility located at Aylesbury and has plans for it to be the first zero carbon site of its kind. The UK business has a team of approximately 3,500 colleagues located at its dairies, distribution centres and head office.