Industry Panel 2 - Panellists

The UK Dairy Day Industry Panel 2: The Future of Milk Pricing and Processing

12.00noon on first floor in Sharing Knowledge Zone

> Andrew Williamson, Dairy Farmer and CIS Chairman


Chris Walkland, Milk Analyst/Consultant

Chris Walkland is an agricultural journalist, market analyst and consultant specialising in the dairy sector. He has written about the industry for around 25 years on all aspects of the dairy supply chain from primary production on the farm through to the economics and politics at processor, retailer and consumer level.

He writes the fortnightly Dairy Market Report for The Provision Trade Federation – a trade body that represents many of the UK’s processors; is a commentator in British Dairying magazine, as well as other farming papers; and features every week in the Kite Consulting dairy industry podcast.


Graham Wilkinson, Global Vice President - Agriculture at Arla Foods

Graham leads the Global Agriculture team at Arla Foods, supporting over 8,000 cooperative farmer owners across seven markets and managing the delivery of innovative commercial milk concepts on farm. During his extensive career at Arla, he has worked in both UK and global roles helping to steer and develop a data-driven on-farm sustainability agenda, both for specific commercial customers and the wider cooperative. This work reached a significant milestone this summer as he oversaw the rollout of Arla’s Sustainability Incentive model, which links part of the milk price to on-farm activity that improves sustainability.
He has also spent time retailer-side at Tesco PLC, where he worked to strengthen the sustainability of the agriculture supply chains in its dairy, beef, pork and poultry sectors. Farming has always been part of his life, working with his grandparents and parents on the family farm. He is a passionate leader and strong advocate of dairy’s role in a sustainable food system.    


Diarmaid Mac Colgáin, Founder and CEO, Concept Dairy

Diarmaid’s career started as a Commodities Trader, specialising in the oil, gas and electricity markets before moving into the world of dairy as Head of Trading at Ornua Co-Operative Limited, home of Kerrygold butter and Ireland’s largest dairy trading company and exporter. It was here that Diarmaid realised that there is a problem in the dairy supply chain: a lack of price transparency and no technology or tools to support the dairy sector to manage price volatility resulting in farmers always being price-takers.

Drawing on his 18+years trading experience, Diarmaid set about developing a solution that provides the dairy sector with the confidence, knowledge and technology to make better decisions on price. Concept Dairy works with dairy farmers, processors and buyers across the dairy supply chain to create price transparency and to give dairy farmers control of their milk price, and their core inputs: Feed, Fuel and Fertiliser, giving farmers a known margin, and financial security. Diarmaid is passionate about creating price transparency across the supply chain to make a more sustainable dairy sector for the long-term.


John Giles, Divisional Director, Promar International

John is a Divisional Director of Promar International, a consulting and research group operating in the agricultural and food sectors - and a subsidiary of the leading livestock genetics business, Genus - ABS.

Educated at University College Swansea in the early 1980s, he has been with the company for over 19 years. He has worked a good deal in the UK & international dairy sector, as well as work on a range of other agri food assignments covering products such as meat, horticulture, cereals, processed foods, confectionery, wine, beer, biscuits, jams, preserves, agri inputs and services & technologies.

John Giles has now worked on assignments in some 60 countries, including the UK and all other EU markets, China, Korea, Japan, India, New Zealand, Australia, the Middle East, Chile, Brazil, the Caribbean, East and South Africa, the US, Canada, Russia, the FSU and Eastern Europe.

In the dairy sector, he has carried out assignments for the likes of US Dairy Export Council, Defra, the Estonian Investment Agency, the USDA, AUSTRADE, PROCHILE, Agriculture & Agri Food Canada, New Zealand Trade & Enterprise, Enterprise Ireland, the Japanese Agricultural & Livestock Corporation, Nestle, Cadbury, Arla Foods, Dairy UK, AHDB, Invest Northern Ireland, Scottish Enterprise, & the Welsh Government’s Food Division, the International Dairy Forum, as well as in house studies, for our parent company Genus, in Ireland, China, India, Turkey, Poland and Russia. He has worked on assignments involving a wide range of dairy ingredients such as cheese, butter, SMP, WMP, yoghurts and cream.

He has been appointed a Visiting Fellow at the School of Agriculture & Food at the University of Reading and a Visiting Lecturer at the Royal Agriculture University at Cirencester.  He is a past Chair of the UK Institute of Agricultural Management, a member of the Agricultural Economics Society and a Fellow of the Royal Agricultural Society of England.  He has also been a Director of the Oxford Farming Conference and is the past chair of the annual City Food & Drink Lecture held in London every year - and organised by the 8 City Livery Companies involved with agriculture and food.


John Allen, Director, Kite Consulting

John is a Director with Kite Consulting, recognised consultancy specialists in the UK Dairy Sector. He works along the dairy supply chain with some of the UK’s leading operators and has linkages with international processors via IFCN. He has been recognised with a number of awards for his contribution to the industry.