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Farmers’ Strikes in Europe: Wave of Protests Sweeping Across the Continent

today31/01/2024 44

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Farmers across Europe are taking to the streets, demanding changes in the agricultural policy of the European Union. Protests are not only happening in Poland but also in Germany, the Czech Republic, Ireland, Spain, and France.

Protests in Poland

On January 24, 2024, in over 170 locations in Poland, farmers took to the streets with tractors, presenting two main demands. One concerned the influx of goods from Ukraine, and the other addressed restrictions in agricultural production stemming from the European Green Deal strategy. Farmers demanded changes in the EU agricultural policy and restrictions on the influx of goods from Ukraine.

Protests in Germany

German farmers also have reasons for discontent. They are outraged by a new fertilizer regulation project and want to draw attention to the dire situation of cattle breeders in the country. On January 28, 2022, farmers from Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania announced a protest, blocking roads throughout the region.

Protests in Spain

Spanish farmers are also fed up with the difficult situation and harmful government actions. They are fighting to maintain livestock farming, especially after Consumer Affairs Secretary Alberto Garzon blamed large cattle farms for environmental damage.

Protests in France

In France, farmers are protesting against falling incomes, rising costs (such as energy), bureaucratic burdens, including those resulting from EU regulations, and competition from food imports. French farmers, opposing the EU’s climate policy, are persistent in their protests. On January 30, 2024, they make another attempt to block the key trading market in Rungis. Protests intensify and, in some places, get out of control. On blocked highways around Paris, farmers spent the night in tractors or trailers.

French farmers demanding more government assistance blocked roads in 25 locations. Leaders of two French farmers’ unions, including the largest union FNSEA, announced the “siege of the capital” – blocking all major roads leading to Paris. Protesting farmers demand government actions that would result in higher prices for agricultural products, cost production limits, and increased protection against foreign competition.

Farmers’ protests are currently one of the most significant events in Europe. Farmers demand changes in agricultural policies that will allow them to continue their activities. Faced with rising production costs and falling prices for many agricultural products, farmers feel that their voices must be heard.

Written by: Patryk Zbik

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