First post-quota congress to be held in the UK

By Nicholas Robinson

- Last updated on GMT

The UK will host Europe's first post-quota Congress, says Bryans
The UK will host Europe's first post-quota Congress, says Bryans

Related tags Europe European union International trade

Dairy bosses will tackle the industry’s future, after European milk quotas are abolished, at a ground-breaking UK Dairy Congress next year, Dr Judith Bryans, Dairy UK’s ceo, has exclusively revealed.

“We will be bringing Europe’s dairy industry to the UK next year for the first post milk quota congress,” ​said Bryans in an interview with FoodManufacture.co.uk’s sister title Food Manufacture​.

“What’s interesting is that Europe wants to come to the UK because they are interested in what we’re going to do when the quota is lifted.”

Abolition of the quota

Abolition of the quota will open up Europe’s dairy industry to the world, claimed Bryans, which meant the UK had to prepare to make an impact.

Milk production in Europe has been limited since April 2, 1984 under the Dairy Produce Quota Regulations 1984.

The quota was initially intended to run until 1989, but was extended several times and will finally be abolished on April 1 next year.

Lifting the quota would also allow the UK to significantly reduce its £1.2bn dairy deficit. To do this, the UK must produce between two and four billion extra litres of milk a year, said Bryans.

“Abolishing the quota fits with our growth plan to close the trade deficit,” ​she explained. “It’s certainly going to be a big job and we need to stay ahead of the rest of Europe.”

Other European countries had already set out their stalls to increase milk production and launch new products on to the market through new product development, she said. But the UK needed to do more, she warned.

'Might be a little behind'

“In some ways we might be a little behind and we need to push forward,” ​she added.

Dairy UK and the European Dairy Association will jointly organise the event, which will take place in Edinburgh between October 14 and 18 next year.

“We’re delighted to host the next European Dairy Congress in Edinburgh,” ​she added. “2015 will be a turning point in the EU dairy industry as we enter the post-quota era.

“The congress will be a unique opportunity to share the strengths of the UK dairy industry and to discuss the impact of the end of the quotas on the global dairy sector.”

Bryans was unable to discuss the potential topics the congress would cover next year, but said it would be productive and would showcase the UK’s vibrant industry. It would also be well over a decade since the UK last hosted the European dairy industry, she said.

To read Food Manufacture’s ​Big Interview with Bryans in the August issue, subscribe to the magazine here​.

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