The European Union announced Monday that a majority of EU states agreed to create a €280 million ($418 million) fund to help dairy farmers cope with the impact of low prices.

I'll empty my pocket, and I have 280 million euros for the farmers, EU Agriculture Commissioner Mariann Fischer Boel said at farm talks in Luxembourg.

At the meeting, agriculture ministers gave their backing to a number of Commission proposals to help dairy farmers, including a change of rules to make it easier for the Commission to step into the market and help farmers when prices are ‘disturbed'.

That's (all) I have. I don't have a special account in Switzerland or anywhere else, Fischer Boel told reporters.

A total of 21 of the EU's 27 member states, including France and Germany, wrote on Thursday (15 October) to the Commission calling for “at least an additional €300 million without prejudice to other sectors”.

The fund still needs the approval of Fischer Boel's fellow commissioners, due on 28 October and by EU finance ministers next month.

If they accept the proposal, the money is likely to be available for use early next year.