You’ve made a cow very Happy today!

Cocoa the Cow

You’ve made a cow very happy today! Why we pay a fair price for cream and have signed up to the government’s Prompt Payment Scheme

I was reading the Sunday paper the other day about the plight of dairy farmers in the UK. It’s been difficult for them for many years now but the ongoing supermarket price wars have led to a real battle front on the price of milk and cream with some selling at below cost. It’s even reached the point where milk can be purchased for less than the price of bottled water! How can this be right or sustainable in the long term?

More recently a large dairy cooperative in nearby Melksham said that they had delayed paying their farmers as supermarkets had put too onerous payment terms on them.

But enough of this doom and gloom!

In our own small way we try to counterbalance this. We’ve mentioned our local dairy farm Ivy House Farm and their wonderful Jersey herd several times in the past and are very proud of the rich organic cream that goes into our chocolates.  Geoff, Will and Vanessa telephone us twice a week for our cream order. Farmer Geoff is quite a character and often signs off…

Well you’ve made a cow very happy today!

If he’s in a particularly cheeky mood it may be…

a good whipping.. well each to his own!

We’ve never tried to argue over the price charged for our cream or the payment terms. The truth is that we are very small cream user in comparison to the supermarkets and we are delighted at the wonderful service we receive with deliveries twice a week. The delivery run to us also takes in the Sally Lunn bun bakery and nearby Allington Farm. So just maybe the network of small producers counter balances the dangers of supplying very large customers.

Nonetheless spurred into action we contacted some of our suppliers and told them that we would be signing up to the government’s Prompt Payment Code and asked if they would referee us. Though a voluntary scheme you can’t help but feel that if small producers can sign up to it then so should the large retailers. One of our referees and key ingredient suppliers HB Ingredients are themselves signed up to demonstrate their commitment to paying the Cocoa producers.

So there you have it, we’ve made a commitment to our suppliers, lets hope the big retailers follow suit and stop their loss leading milk price war soon.

In the meantime you can listen to some soothing music and see a film of our trip to Ivy House farm when we adopted and named Cocoa the cow. We’re not quite sure what Geoff made of it all but we certainly enjoyed it!

Oh, and sorry Geoff, I’ve borrowed your line quite a bit. You’ll often hear me at markets and shows in my broadest West country accent say…

You’ve made some chocolatiers very ‘appy today

Matthew – aka Mr Lick the Spoon