Herds of cattle are to be transported to Budapest on April 4 as part of dairy farmers’ demonstration against the crisis in the industry. The protest is directed against milk importers’ supposed food adulteration and tax evasion practices, agrarszektor.hu reports.
Farmers are planning a dramatic protest on the streets of Budapest next Monday, including a “show of breeding animals” in front of the headquarters of the Hungarian Trade Association (OKSZ), as well as a “cattle march” to the National Food Chain Safety Office (Nébih) and the building of the National Tax and Customs Administration (NAV).
Demands for retailers include the suspension of purchase from companies who are involved with dishonest dealings, such as tax evasion; the exclusion of said importers from the trade until further investigation of their import portfolio; and collaboration on the side of the Trade Association in establishing market protection measures following Dutch, Belgian, French and Spanish examples.
They also request comprehensive investigations from Néhib and NAV, respectively, for companies that could have been involved in questionable practices regarding food safety or taxes in the last five years.
According to agrarszektor.hu, the main reason for the demonstrations is the fact that the price of raw milk is 55-72 HUF/kg (approx. €0.20), while the prime cost is between 95-105 HUF/kg (approx. €0.32). Even with EU and Hungarian financial aids farmers are in a disadvantaged position. They also claim that retail chains contribute to the low prices, since, despite their communicated intentions, they still do not provide proper market for the Hungarian goods.
Copy editor: bm