A group of Glanbia milk suppliers who are in dispute with the co-operative regarding its fixed-milk-price (FMP) schemes have engaged the services of a solicitor to represent their interests.

The group includes around 60 suppliers who have not signed up for the Glanbia support scheme, which was rolled out earlier this summer for farmers experiencing difficulties because of the high-proportion of their milk, which was tied into FMP schemes.

Around 500 farmers qualified for the Glanbia support package as they had over 35% of their milk contracted to FMP schemes.

It is estimated that at least 250 of these farmers did not join the support scheme, as it stipulated that farmers would have to tie in milk for 2023 and 2024 at 38c/l.

The Irish Farmers Journal understands that the solicitor will contact Glanbia and seek to represent the group in talks with the co-operative.

If this approach fails, it is envisaged that the solicitor will represent the farmers’ interests in a mediation which will be carried out by a mediator nominated by the Irish Commercial Mediation Association.

The Glanbia suppliers’ group engaging the solicitor are from the co-operative’s southern catchment area, with the core members affiliated with Waterford IFA.