Finance Your Budget Woolies cut milk prices again, as customers rage

Woolies cut milk prices again, as customers rage

cows farm
Tough life: Farmers have struggled to make their cows pay their way. Photo: AAP
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Some Woolworths stores have slashed home brand milk prices to 25c per litre, as Australian shoppers continue their revolt against cheap in-house dairy.

A photo from Woolworths’ Redlands store (near Brisbane) uncovered the discounted two-litre bottles of home brand skim milk.

The photo – which showed two-litre cartons of Woolworths’ skim milk sold for 50c each (or 25c a litre) – was then repeatedly posted to Woolworths’ Facebook page by irate customers.

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“Hey Woolies people, can you tell me which stores are selling milk for $0.50 for 2 litres? You should be ashamed of yourselves. ‪#‎Shame‬,” Lisa Rowntree wrote.

Woolworths’ response was: “Hey Lisa, due to the close expiry date, these items are being sold at $0.50 to clear the unused stock.”

50c milk
Woolworths claimed the milk was discounted because it was close to its use-by-date. Photo: Facebook

This prompted Kimberley Rasmus to post to Facebook: “Why don’t you donate this milk (before it goes out of date!) to charity or Salvos Food Vans or Anglicare Shelters for the homeless and needy who could truly use it!?”.

A minority of Facebook users defended the supermarket chain, and said they would happily buy discounted milk. These users thanked the supermarket chain for providing low prices.

Dairy farmers have been left hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt after Australia’s largest dairy processor Murray Goulburn and New Zealand processor Fonterra unexpectedly slashed prices within a week of each other due to global milk supply conditions.

On Wednesday, Agriculture Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce announced affected farmers would receive a $555 million concessional loan package.

While the processors set the prices at which milk is purchased from farmers, Coles and Woolworths have been attacked for allegedly exerting downward pressure on these wholesale prices.

Dairy industry experts and farmers have urged shoppers to boycott home brand milk for brand name milk, because the higher retail price means more money went to farmers from processors.

The 25c a litre milk discount is the latest blow to Woolworths home brand milk in as many days.

On Wednesday, The New Daily revealed that Woolworths has been selling home brand milk seemingly disguised as a farmer-linked premium brand.

In that story, a dairy farmer representative said Coles’ proposed new home brand milk range – which was 20c per litre more expensive – was a “furphy” because customers rarely switched to new milk brands.

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