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Swiss farmers protest falling milk prices

Video by Rebecca BOWRING

Text by FRANCE 24 (with wires)

Latest update : 2009-09-20

Following high octane demonstrations in France, Germany and other western European countries, Swiss farmers in Lausanne took to the streets Sunday to protest falling milk prices.

Europe's milk production protests spread to Switzerland Sunday when Swiss farmers took to the streets protesting falling milk prices.

In the picturesque Swiss town of Lausanne, about 200 demonstrating farmers called for a fair price for their milk. The current rate of one Swiss franc per litre, they say, is too low to make ends meet and threatens to put them out of business.

The protests followed angry demonstration in France, Belgium and Germany, which saw farmers dump massive quantities of milk into the Rhine River or spray milk on fields.

The action comes after European Union farm ministers could not agree to an aid package for the sector during a Brussels meeting on Sept. 7.

Dairy product prices have collapsed due to low demand caused by the financial and economic crisis.

In November, EU agriculture ministers agreed to lift milk production quotas by one percent per year before scrapping them for 2014-2015.

The European Commission, the EU's executive arm, has agreed to introduce limited aid but has refused to go back on its decision to scrap the quota system.


Date created : 2009-09-20