First Milk's Bill Mustoe has delivered a positive update to members, which reflects on the progress made by the business over the seven months since he joined as chairman.
Mr Mustoe commented: "We have created momentum across five key areas over the last few months.
"Firstly, the business has delivered an improved financial performance in 2009/10 compared with the previous year. There has been a £10 million improvement in pre-tax profits and a £10m reduction in our bank debt. We were also able to invest an additional £4.6 million in capital projects at our sites during the year. 2010/11 has also started off well, with the April and May numbers coming in ahead of budget.
"Secondly, we have added over £13m to the milk fund in 2010 and will increase this just as soon as we are able. So far there has been a cumulative 1.4ppl increase for producers in the liquid pool; a 1.1ppl increase for those in the balancing pool; and a 1ppl increase for those in the cheese pool.
"Thirdly, the leadership of the business, at Board and Executive level, is evolving to deliver a stronger, more integrated team. We have appointed a chief executive and vice chairman over the last couple of months and the changes to member representation on the Board will be in place following our AGM in October.
"Fourthly, we are redefining First Milk's position in the marketplace, broadening our customer base and earning more from the market.
"Finally, we are focusing on face-to-face communication with members over the summer with a series of farm road shows across the UK. We started last week with events in Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire where we had a combined audience of nearly three hundred. The aim of the road shows is to meet as many members as possible face-to-face."
For further information, please contact:
Group communications director
T: 0141 847 6789
M: 07767 241452
22 June 2010