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Dutch farmers protest against green reforms forcing them to reduce their livestock count

Dutch farmers have continued their protest against the government’s latest green reforms by blocking roads, supermarkets, and distribution centers.

The reform that has stoked their anger is the government legislation which requires them to either use less fertilizer or reduce their number of livestock. Local governments have been given a year to fully work out the details of the legislation, and it must be fully implemented by 2030.

The Dutch government’s target is to hit a 70% reduction of nitrogen oxide close to nature preserves. Government reports have hinted that this could result in the closure of up to 30% of Dutch livestock farms.

Airline KLM advised people as a precautionary measure to use public transportation rather than cars to reach Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport because of the blocked roads, Euronews reports.

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said he fully supported the farmer’s right to protest, but they must not break the law. These comments came as several tractors made their way to the Dutch Parliament Buildings.

“Freedom of speech and the right to demonstrate are a vital part of our democratic society, and I will always defend them,” Rutte said. “But … it is not acceptable to create dangerous situations, it is not acceptable to intimidate officials – we will never accept that.”

Justice Minister Dilan Yesilgöz-Zegerius hit out at the protests, Tweeting: “Several highways are currently blocked by farmers. You don’t make your point by endangering road users. This can have serious consequences. Then the police have no choice but to intervene where possible, if necessary, afterwards. Don’t let it get that far.”

The Agractie Farmer’s Group recently pleaded with Dutch environmental minister Christianne Van Der Wal to drop the proposals. “The farmers will fight for their future,” the leader of Agractie said in a recent video.

The Netherlands is one of the world’s largest exporters of agricultural products. According to government data, they exported over $111M worth of products in 2021.

ARTICLE: PAUL MURDOCH

MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE

PHOTO CREDITS: SLOWFOOD.COM

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Paul, 37, is from Scotland in the UK, but currently lives and works in Bangkok. Paul has worked in different industries such as telemarketing, retail, hospitality, farming, insurance, and teaching, where he works now. He teaches at an all-girls High School in Bangkok. “It’s a lot of work, but I love my job.” Paul has an active interest in politics. His reason for writing for FBA is to offer people the facts and allow them to make up their own minds. Whilst he believes opinion columns have their place, it is also important that people can have accurate news with no bias.

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