Milk processing giant Müller has announced it will serve notice to several of its north-east suppliers as part of a series of measures to reduce its milk pool in Scotland.

The firm, which is supplied by 230 Scottish farms, claims it has seen an “unprecedented 25% surge” in milk produced by its Scottish farms.

One year’s notice will be served on farms affected.

Müller will also introduce a tiered transport charge for dairy farmer suppliers in Scotland from February 2020 with the fastest expanding dairy farmers shouldering a proportionately higher charge than those who have grown production more modestly.

Rob Hutchison, milk supply director for Müller Milk & Ingredients, said: “We fully appreciate that these measures will be extremely unwelcome and destabilising for our farmer suppliers particularly in the North East of Scotland, but the current situation is unviable and we must act.

We completed the largest single investment in fresh milk processing in Scotland in more than a decade at our dairy in Bellshill last year and we will continue to do what we can to stimulate new demand for fresh milk.

“But with fresh milk already in 96% of the nation’s fridges and overall consumer demand for the product in marginal decline, the reality is that it is extremely unlikely that this sector will soak up the heightened levels of milk production from farms which we have seen.

“Our farm services team will now work closely with affected dairy farmers and we will do everything in our power to help them adjust to the changes which we must now make.”

It follows a month-long review in which the firm sought views and input from the Müller Milk Group farmer board, which is elected to represent dairy farmers, National Farmers Union Scotland and the Scottish Government.