CANADIAN dairy giant Saputo has lifted its farmgate milk price for its southern suppliers with the step-up to be paid next month.

In a statement yesterday, Australia’s largest milk processor said it would increase its price by 14 cents a kilogram of butterfat and 28c/kg of protein. It said this took its southern region price to $5.95 a kilogram of milk solids from an opening of $5.75kg/MS.

Other dairy processors have yet to step-up prices this season, but some started the year ahead of Saputo.

Saputo traditionally reviews its milk price quarterly, in October, January, April and June.

Yesterday’s step-up will be paid next month with proceeds from this month.

The step-up comes as preliminary Dairy Australia figures, seen by The Weekly Times, reveal a production drop of 3.9 per cent across Australia for the financial year-to-date.

The biggest plunge has been in Victoria, with August production down 6.9 per cent compared to the same time last year. In western Victoria — Saputo heartland — it was down 11.9 per cent for August.

This comes as dairy farmers continue to move processors as they case better farmgate milk prices and cull cows as the fodder shortage and dry conditions bite.

NSW market milk Saputo suppliers also received a step-up today.

Their price will rise 28 cents a kilogram of butterfat and 42c/kg protein. This takes the price to 52 cents a litre, according to Saputo a rise from 49.6c/litre.

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