The Chron­i­cle

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - National News -

GWELO, Fri­day, Novem­ber 11, 1966 — Within two min­utes of be­ing asked to ac­cept or re­ject the new milk quota sys­tem of­fered to Rhode­sian dairy farm­ers by the Min­is­ter of Agri­cul­ture, mem­bers of the Mid­lands branch of the Dairy Pro­duc­ers’ As­so­ci­a­tion unan­i­mously re­jected it at Gwelo this af­ter­noon.

The chair­man, Mr HP Raynor, had out­lined the Min­is­ter’s scheme. The re­jec­tion was fol­lowed by many harsh words from men who felt they had a griev­ance. At the end of the meet­ing the fol­low­ing res­o­lu­tion was ap­proved: “The meet­ing sup­ports the as­so­ci­a­tion’s re­quest for a mar­gin of 5d. per gal­lon for milk de­liv­ered to the Dairy Mar­ket­ing Board on the grounds that any lower mar­gin is un­re­al­is­tic.”

“The meet­ing there­fore (a) rejects the Min­ster’s pro­pos­als, and (b) ac­cepts that it may be nec­es­sary to tie any pric­ing ar­range­ment to the present level of pro­duc­tion”.

This, it was said, was in line with a res­o­lu­tion passed at Ga­tooma this morn­ing. Mr Raynor told the meet­ing:” I don’t be­lieve in the scheme my­self ”.

Farm­ers were now get­ting 33d a gal­lon for their milk. Un­der the Min­is­ter’s scheme they would get about 32d. Four or five years ago there were about 500 dairy farm­ers. Now there were 440 odd.

This is an in­dus­try such as theirs, was the “writ­ing on the wall”

Mr Raynor said the po­si­tion had changed for the worse since last year. “Our costs have gone up by 11 per­cent and at the same time prices have come down by 15 per­cent”. If prices were raised to 38d. a gal­lon the man who pro­duced 120 gal­lons a day could earn £75 a month. The 38d. a gal­lon could be achieved, said Mr Raynor, or by putting up milk prices or by a sub­sidy, but the gov­ern­ment had given a frank “no” to these choices.

The nec­es­sary sub­sidy, he said would cost only £370 000 a year, which was a fleabite — chicken feed — to the coun­try.

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