Farmers in Canada are dumping milk down the drain after demand plummets
Some dairy farmers in Canada are being forced to dump unsold milk after product demand has plummeted as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The widespread closure of restaurants, hotels, coffee shops and cafeterias across the country has meant that wholesale milk sales have declined in recent weeks, Yahoo Fiance Canada reports.
As a result, many Canadian dairy farmers have had to dump raw milk product while the industry deals with demand fluctuations, such as shifting from wholesale to retail.
What a waste! #COVID19Pandemic is forcing Dairy farmers to dump their milk down the drain so the milk market doesn’t implode. Why not give it away to those who need it? We’ll get to the bottom of it at 6:00. pic.twitter.com/ZXp2uSjWQa— Shaun Gallagher (@ShaunGalNews) April 2, 2020
"The dramatic changes in demand and the related challenges being felt throughout the supply chain have resulted in the need for the disposal of some raw milk, which is extremely unfortunate and difficult," Dairy Farmers of Canada said in a statement.
"The last thing anyone wants to see is their milk being discarded, least of all farmers and their partners in the value chain."
While farmers have been donating large amounts of product to food banks, the decline in demand means many will still have to dump unspoiled raw milk.
It's estimated that around 500 Canadian farms have had to dump 5 million litres of milk a week.
It sucks to dump a tank of milk. It also sucks to walk into the grocery store and see the milk shelf empty. There were no 4L bags at our store Monday and they were limiting people to only buying 1. These 2 realities don’t compute for me & likely many other consumers. #teamdairy— Jen Christie (@SavvyFarmgirl) April 2, 2020
Dairy farmers across the United States and in the United Kingdom are having the same issue.
And seeing footage of milk being dumped has many people understandably upset.
Absolutely insane, I know a ton of older people who are scared to death to go out. Every time I ask what they need it’s milk.... seems like there should be a better outcome then this!— Danny (@Danny67581431) April 5, 2020
"There is just nowhere for it to go," John Walker of Walker Dairy Inc., near Aylmer, Ontario told CTV News. "Schools, restaurants, and even Tim Hortons' amount of cream is down. Those are all things that have slowed down demand for our product right now."
The Retail Council of Canada said it's working with producers and processors to ensure the supply chain remains stable with minimal waste and is helping to turn it into products with a longer shelf life, such as yogurt.
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