Lakeland Dairies has informed its suppliers in NI that from 1 June 2023, anyone moving all – or part – of their annual supply to another processor will incur financial penalties if adequate notice has not been served. The new terms and conditions agreed by the Lakeland Board are laid out in the co-op’s newsletter for May.

For a co-op member with a milk contract in place, the farmer must see out the notice period set out in the contract.

However, many suppliers in NI do not operate under a contract, so the change means they will now be required to give 12 months’ notice in writing if they want to move to another processor.


Where suppliers fail to meet the criteria, Lakeland will automatically deduct the value of volume and winter bonus payments for the previous 12 months from the subsequent milk cheque.

For a non-contracted farmer supplying 1m litres annually, on a supply profile matching the NI average, the penalties would amount to approximately £7,675.

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