Tuesday, March 5, 2024

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While until today dozens of tractors and trucks have blocked traffic on the A1 motorway in and out of Orti, demonstrations are expected on the 30th in Lombardy, Tuscany and Sardinia.

Farmer protest is also spreading in Italy, like the wave that started in Germany and France, and does not seem to be stopping in the face of Europe's overly punitive, Green Deal-oriented policy. While this afternoon also dozens of tractors blocked traffic on the A1 motorway at the Orte nel Lazio exit, in both directions, new large rallies are scheduled for next Tuesday, organized in different regions of Lombardy, Tuscany and Sardinia by the “Agrarian Salvation” movement. . . Another major event will be the one that will take place on January 31 (Wednesday) in Verona, on the occasion of the opening of the Fieragricola exhibition, the reference exhibition of the sector. Italian farmers and ranchers, who have been pushed to the limit by excessive production costs and low wages, will make their voices heard more and more by displaying their tractors in the streets and squares.

“We do not feel that agricultural organizations are represented, there are issues that concern European politics but many of them must also be addressed at the national level such as the fact of recognition of the cost of production, which has been suspended since 2019,” Giorgio Pesoli, a contractor from Verona, told Adenchronos, spokesman for the popular movement that responds to the slogan “United we win”, a protest that goes beyond the membership of each farmer or breeder to sector associations such as Coldiretti, Confagriculturaltura, CIA, Copagri.

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Last Tuesday, Remo Roncari, 52, a raw materials trader from Venice, took part in a peaceful demonstration also in Verona near the fruit and vegetable market. The farmers camped near the fruit and vegetable market for two days, stayed overnight and left the next afternoon. “We arrived with 400 tractors, and there were thousands of us,” he said when reached by phone. “If we don’t have answers we will move forward but we don’t want to set up roadblocks, we are always asking for help.” Licenses. There are about 900 people in my WhatsApp group.” In fact, these are groups of hundreds of farmers who interact with each other and self-meet via social media in different provinces, from north to south.

“The market is changing due to huge imports of agricultural products such as corn that are driving down the prices of our production while production costs have not been reduced and farmers cannot cope – explains Roncari again – and what also makes us nervous is that consumer prices have not fallen.” Taxes, from IMU to Irpef, also affect agricultural income, and the threat of fuel subsidy removal looms, participants reported directly, as did their French and German colleagues. Among the various demands is also the containment of wildlife that causes serious damage, such as, for example, nutria in Emilia-Romagna.

Stephen Tovey, 27, owner of a dairy cow farm in Frosinone, took part in a three-day demonstration in Piazza Frosinone with a parade through the city in recent days with a large participation of about 200 tractors. “We fight for a fair wage that is hampered by European regulations, such as those related to the obligation not to farm 4% of the land, but not only that. – says the agribusinessman – We want to protect Italian products and dispel the opinion that farmers pollute when in reality we are environmental protectors We take to the streets without union flags because the associations we belong to have failed to achieve certain goals and we are upset. The milk that comes from abroad is sold as Italian, and this is unbearable. Moreover, the supply chain makes money but very little reaches the product.”

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As for politics, Al-Toufi says: “We are open to dialogue with the ministry and with Europe, but we must achieve certain results. We are united and we want to make our voice heard at the municipal and provincial levels and also at the national level. We organize peaceful demonstrations and distance ourselves from those who could cause harm to the population. But we are ready to move forward because we want to protect our businesses and our families.”

Wynne Dinwiddie
Wynne Dinwiddie
"Infuriatingly humble alcohol fanatic. Unapologetic beer practitioner. Analyst."
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