Thousands of striking dairy farmers in Germany have agreed to lift their blockades of milk processing plants, just as shortages began to be felt. However, the farmers say a week-long boycott of deliveries will continue while they wait for talks with industry officials. Several dairies had threatened legal action if the tractor blockades were not lifted to allow non-striking producers through.
As one farmer explains, the dispute is over falling revenue. Germany, along with other bloc countries, has seen its farm gate prices fall sharply since April, when the EU raised its production quota limits to calm the surging dairy market.
The farmers’ union wants the dairies and large supermarket chains to pay producers at least 43 cents per litre, compared to the 28 to 34 cents they get now.
Similar strike action in Switzerland has already been brought to an end after a rise in price was agreed.