The Government says dairy prices have fallen further than it expected and it now believes they could go even lower.
The Finance Minister told MPs today that dairy prices are 40 percent lower than they were in March.
Bill English said neither industry experts nor the Government foresaw the extent of the dairy price collapse and how tough conditions would become for farmers.
He said a fall in prices of this magnitude on a sector that generated 20 percent of exports would have flow on effects for economic growth.
The Reserve Bank cut the official cash rate today - noting that dairy prices had fallen about 20 percent in the last six weeks.