First Milk has changed its approach to regional milk pool pricing from April 1, which will see its previous payment schedules simplified to just two payment schedules – First Milk liquid and First Milk manufacturing.

The development has been made in response to member feedback and thew co-operative says it is fully supported by the member council and board. It will see milk prices harmonised at a standard litre of 4.0 per cent butterfat and 3.3 per cent protein, with the April price on this basis being 26ppl.

Commenting on the developments, Jim Baird, farmer director and vice-chairman, said: “Whilst in recent weeks we have seen some recovery in the market, unfortunately, the overall global dairy commodity markets remain weaker than last year, which continues to impact on our returns. We know that this price drop will be disappointing news for our members and continue to do all that we can to minimise the impact of reductions.”

He added: “This more simplified and transparent approach on milk prices reflects the requirements of the business today and is a progressive step which unites our members across the country.”