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Europe

Dairy farmers halt strike until October 5

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2009-09-24

European dairy farmers have suspended their strike until October 5, when European Union agriculture ministers will hold an extraordinary meeting to discuss the dairy crisis.

AFP  - A strike in Europe by dairy farmers was halted on Thursday pending emergency talks in Brussels over aid for producers amid collapsed prices, an industry leader said.

"The strike is suspended until October 5," said European Milk Board chief Romuald Schaber, referring to the date when European Union agriculture ministers will address the crisis.

"But it will be back on in a flash if no reasonable decisions are taken," he added.

The strike began with a call from French dairy farmers on September 10, with counterparts from seven other countries joining their action, according to the EMB.

A Belgian milk producers' official added that members would still engage in action, after demonstrations including the dumping of millions of litres.

The European Commission is under mounting pressure, with 19 countries backing Franco-German efforts designed to inflate prices for milk, butter, powdered milk and cheeses.

Dairy prices in many cases halved since 2007 are partly blamed on the phased removal of milk production quotas by 2014-2015, with only limited aid offered by Brussels to farmers in return.
 

Date created : 2009-09-24

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