Pembrokeshire’s green and pleasant farmland is capable of producing some of the best grass in the world, so why is it that milk buyers can’t pay their dairy farmers enough to keep them in business?

According to analysts, milk producers are leaving the industry at the rate of 7% a year and they predict in three years’ time, one in five will have gone.

Most farmers have seen their milk cheque cut by an average of 2ppl since Christmas and some buyers dropped the price further in March — by as much as a further 2ppl.

This will mean many producers will be bordering on the cost of production when rises in fertiliser and fuel prices are taken into account.

I listened to Gordon Brown being interviewed on Radio 4 recently on the issue of food prices. He was quick to assure consumers that retail prices were falling and would continue to do so.

As usual, it will be the producer who takes the biggest hit and dairy farmers again seem to be in the firing line.

Some will argue that there is justification in market forces being allowed to operate, but when supermarkets sell 90% of our liquid milk can this really be classed as market forces?

A guaranteed basic supply of liquid milk is as important as fresh water, but if the current trend continues it would appear that we are going to be dependant on imports within the next year or so.

All it would need would be an extra 5ppl to turn loss into profit and persuade farmers that it is worthwhile to get up at dawn every morning.