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Dairy producers use vending machines to reach customers

Daisy Bank Dairy

Dairy producers are reaching new customers by developing from milking machine to vending machine.

Self-serve milk vending machines are growing in popularity, and with Cywain’ s help a number of Welsh dairy farms are taking up the technology – and providing a modern twist on traditional farmgate sales.

Dewi Evans, Cywain Project Manager, said “Milk vending machines are another way producers can sell direct to the public, adding value to their milk by establishing a premium product brand.

“Cywain is working with a number of Welsh producers to create their brands and launch their vending businesses. Also, such has been the uptake of vending technology that in the near future, Cywain will be adding the location of producers with vending machines to the Cywain Producers Map  https://menterabusnes.cymru/cywain/en/our-producers/ .

“Since its launch in April the Producers Map has been successful in directing shoppers to a host of excellent food and drink producers from across Wales who can provide an online shop and delivery service.”

The Lloyd family launched Daisy Bank Dairy just as the world was changing – but with advice from Cywain the venture is growing.

Run by in partnership by father and son Mike and Glenn, milk production at the family’s farm in Montgomery goes back three generations, and the enterprise has been organic since 2017.

It was following the birth of Glenn and partner Sandie’s son Reggie in 2018 that the idea for a milk vending operation was hatched – and Daisy Bank Dairy was born.

Gently pasteurised, Daisy Bank’s organic milk is non-homogenised – where the fat particles rise to form a creamy top layer as opposed to being dispersed throughout the milk.

Says Glenn, “We had a few ‘Dragon’s Den’ style meetings with retailers, and we’ve chosen to work with family-run businesses like ourselves. There are benefits for us, and for them working with local farms.”

Currently, Daisy Bank’s vending machines are at two locations – Tuffins convenience store in Welshpool and Costcutter in Caersws.

Lesley Griffiths, the Minister for Environment, Energy and Rural Affairs, said: “I am very pleased that Welsh dairies now have another method of selling directly to their customers.

“We know that the dairy sector has been among those hardest hit by the recent pandemic – and while we are keen to support our dairy farmers wherever possible, it’s very encouraging to see that businesses providing milk to consumers will have another method of doing so through these new vending machines.

“This is of particular good news as it will also help Welsh milk producers to market their own, premium brands.”