Bega Cheese has lifted its opening milk price just 10 days after announcing it, as the battle for milk supply intensifies.
Bega's new weighted average price is $6.94 a kilogram milk solids for southern Victoria and south-east Australia and $7.09/kg MS for northern Victoria and the Riverina.
It's a lift of $0.14/kg MS for the southern price and $0.09/kg MS for the northern Victorian price.
Bega was behind its major competitors Saputo and Fonterra in the southern area with both offering a price of $6.85/kg MS.
Fonterra lifted its 2021/22 opening price to $6.85 a kilogram milk solids on June 4 after announcing its initial opening price of $6.55/kg on May 10.
Hours later on June 4, Saputo lifted its 2021/22 opening price to $6.85 a kilogram milk solids, up 20 cents/kg MS on the price it announced on June 1.
- Dairy demand returns to normal but risks still abound
- Bega now has biggest influence on milk prices, says analyst
- Dairy price "auction" makes a mockery of the Code, says Gipps farmer
In a letter to suppliers, Bega executive chairman Barry Irvin said Bega had put its "best foot forward" when announcing opening prices, with these milk prices reflecting Bega's market and the strength of Bega's business.
"This has been again demonstrated this year with many companies adjusting their prices following Bega's opening price announcement," he said.
"While Bega is very pleased with the response we have received from our opening announcement and is comfortable with our supply position, it is very important to us not only to reflect the market for our products but also ensure our suppliers have a competitive milk price offering".
Mr Irvin said as a result, Bega had revised its 2021/2022 opening milk prices.
Bega executive general manager of beverage operations, Mark McDonald, said the revised 2021/2022 opening milk prices addressed Bega's competitive position.
"It allowed its suppliers to plan for the season ahead and make the best decisions for their farming businesses including taking advantage of our growth and new milk incentives," he said.
Want to read more stories like this?
Sign up below to receive our e-newsletter delivered fresh to your email in-box twice a week.