Farmgate costs supplied by retailers must rise throughout all sectors to cowl the huge rises in meals manufacturing prices, the pinnacle of NFU Scotland has stated.
The union has unveiled the outcomes of a member survey which discovered Scottish farmers and crofters are set to cut back manufacturing on farms in response to unprecedented will increase for key inputs.
Over the previous 12 months, fertiliser and power costs have trebled, and costs for gas and animal feed have doubled, due to a number of elements, together with the conflict in Ukraine.
See additionally: Retailers conserving ‘unfair share’ of pig sale worth – NFUS
This time final 12 months, farmers have been paying 57-58p/litre for purple diesel; it’s now 124-126p/litre. Crop costs have risen too, though they’ve fallen slightly in latest days.
Farmers have no idea whether or not this 12 months’s harvest will probably be good and they’re going to have to consider drying and gas prices. And the arable sector appears doubtless to have a lot greater prices for subsequent season, though returns could possibly be greater.
NFUS president Martin Kennedy stated he had requested for continued farm assist from the Scottish authorities to a minimum of present ranges, however costs must additionally rise on the farm gate.
“The actuality is, given the place inflation is correct now, the top product wants to rise,” he informed journalists assembled at a press briefing on the Royal Highland Show on Thursday 23 June.
“The latest inflation figures that got here out final week confirmed a 9.1% rise, however we’re wanting, as an trade, at inflation of 100% – and in some instances 250% or more – in a number of the enter prices now we have. That’s a colossal distinction.”
Mr Kennedy stated he recognised the difficulties customers have been going through with inflation, but when farmers didn’t obtain slightly bit more cash now from the top product, they might have to obtain a a lot larger rise sooner or later to keep away from a severe contraction in meals manufacturing.
“Farmers will adapt and they’re going to contract their companies, so we’d like to make certain we are able to proceed to have that product on our cabinets,” he added.
“Because if we begin dropping that infrastructure, that vital mass, the implications additional down the monitor could possibly be even better. So that finish product wants to rise.”
Mr Kennedy stated about one-third of meals is wasted within the UK as a result of it’s too low-cost and is taken as a right. “Food wants to be inexpensive, however not low-cost, and that’s what we’d like governments to perceive.”
Pig sector ‘nonetheless in disaster’
NFU vice-president and Midlothian pig producer Robin Traquair stated the previous 12 months had been essentially the most tough time in residing reminiscence for pig farmers.
Covid-19 and the lack of the Chinese market, severe disruption within the provide chain, price rises in key inputs and a scarcity of labour on farms and in abattoirs had left producers battling to run viable companies.
Mr Traquair stated Scotland’s personal pig sector was “going by way of the ground”, but some supermarkets have been nonetheless importing 40% of their product from different international locations.