“Farmers Fund” milk brand gets boost from levy and funds grants to dairy farms
The Victorian Farmers Federation (VFF) is playing an active role in revitalising the dairy farming sector through its ownership of a new brand, and announced today its allocation of 60 first-round grants to dairy farmers.
The source of the funds is a 40 cent levy on each two-litre carton of Farmers Fund milk sold at Coles.
In early September 2016, Coles committed AUD $1 million to the VFF Farmers Fund and to place the Farmers Fund branded milk alongside its own $1 per litre milk.
More than 600 applications for funding were received by the VFF which will now review many of the unsuccessful applications before announcing its second-round allocations.
Applications can still be made but close at the end of December 2016.
The grants allocated are between AUD $5,000 and AUD $20,000 and being used by the dairy farmers for farm improvement works or equipment purchases and even succession planning.
The successful applicants were chosen for demonstrating that the grant would improve their businesses.
VFF is hoping that in the next 12 months the Fund will grow by between AUD $1.5million and AUD $2million.
Despite the fact that the initial deal was made between VFF and Coles in September 2016, the agreement is non-exclusive, however; the Farmers Fund brand is wholly owned by VFF.
Discussions are proceeding with other distribution networks to place Farmers Fund milk into Woolworths.