Two County Tyrone dairy farms have won prestigious awards for the exceptionally high quality of milk produced on their farms, at the Lakeland Dairies Milk Quality Awards.
Rex Wilson, Cookstown, Co Tyrone scooped the overall Lakeland Dairies Northern Ireland Milk Quality Award.
The Northern Ireland runners-up were Albert and David McCrea, Newtownstewart, Co Tyrone.
Winning a milk quality award is a deeply impressive achievement where individual dairy farmers have produced the highest quality milk, benchmarked against 2,500 other high quality dairy farmers supplying over 1.1 billion litres of milk to Lakeland Dairies.
The awards publicly recognise the achievements of Lakeland Dairies milk suppliers who are committed to efficiency and quality in all aspects of their milk production.
The awards were presented by the Irish Minister for Regional Development and Rural Affairs, Heather Humphreys, together with Lakeland Dairies Chairman Alo Duffy and Chief Executive, Michael Hanley. Dairy farmers from Cavan, Louth, Meath, Westmeath and Offaly also won awards.
“Lakeland Dairies is a market leading global provider of excellent dairy products and we have a very positive reputation developed over many years and decades.”Alo Duffy, Lakeland Dairies Chairman
Lakeland Dairies Chairman Alo Duffy said: “Lakeland Dairies is a market leading global provider of excellent dairy products and we have a very positive reputation developed over many years and decades. We depend entirely on overall quality and reliability across all of the products we supply to world markets. That process begins with our milk suppliers. Producing the best quality milk requires immense commitment and hard work all year around. These winners show the very high standards that exist across our entire milk supply base and they are to be warmly congratulated.”
Lakeland Chief Executive Michael Hanley said: “We market a wide range of dairy foodservice and food ingredient products worldwide. With 230 different products, that is nearly 100% of all milk sent to us that we export in the form of value added products. The first building block in that process is the milk that we collect for processing and we’re fortunate to have very high quality milk suppliers across 15 counties on an all-island basis. The Milk Quality Award winners are exemplary of the very best traditions of excellence in dairy farming.
“There is still volatility in world dairy markets and that is why we recently introduced a fixed milk price scheme to help to provide some certainty for our milk producers. Any improvement in dairy market conditions will be very welcome. There are some signs that a gradual improvement in world dairy markets may emerge by year-end. There is still a high level of dairy oversupply on world markets even though the actual rate of growth in milk supply has started to slow down.”