3rd January 2019: Lidl UK has today announced that it has launched its Grassroots Dairy Partnership, with Müller Milk & Ingredients, which marks the latest development in their work together to secure a sustainable end-to-end dairy supply chain, from the grassroots through to the customer.
The partnership follows Lidl’s commitment last year, to offer a fixed-term price deal to dairy farmers, and covers all of the elements necessary in building and securing a sustainable dairy sector. This includes transparent sourcing, animal welfare, the environment and people.
Through a Lidl ambassador programme, formed in conjunction with Müller Direct Next Generation, the partnership specifically focuses on developing the next generation of UK dairy farmers. Young farmers signed up as Lidl Grassroots Dairy Partnership ambassadors will be offered bespoke training, including workshops on how to achieve lean and effective processes, as well as the opportunity to engage with Lidl’s senior management teams, to enhance their knowledge of the retail industry.
Lidl UK’s Commercial Director, Ryan McDonnell, said: “Following our announcement last year, we’re excited to be launching this partnership and working with Müller to help secure a supply chain that will safeguard the long-term viability of dairy farming in the UK.”
“As a business, we are committed to supporting sustainable growth in the British dairy farming sector, and through our new ambassador programme, we look forward to cultivating the relationships we have with young farmers across the country.”
Rob Hutchison, Milk Supply Director at Müller Milk & Ingredients said: “We are delighted to further build our long term strategic partnership with Lidl, working together to deliver benefits for the whole supply chain, from consumer to farmer.”
“The ‘Müller Direct Fixed Price Contract’, introduced in 2018 with support from Lidl, is already providing dairy farmers with real security and confidence for the future.”
“The other initiatives we will now work on together will be focused on tackling additional challenges including greater use of recycled plastics, reducing food waste and water use, and further strengthening dairy farming businesses.”
“Müller now has the most comprehensive, well invested network of dairies in the UK and we aim to work in partnership with key customers like Lidl so that they can offer consumers a distinctive fresh milk proposition.”
As part of its sourcing strategy, Lidl is committed to supporting British producers, with up to two thirds of core products sourced from UK suppliers. In March 2017, Lidl signed the NFU’s ‘Back British Farming Charter’, further cementing its commitment to the British farming industry.