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Farmers to protest, not blockade Czech-Austrian crossing Mon

by 5m Editor
23 March 2007, at 8:36am

CZECH REPUBLIC - Czech farmers will stage a protest on the Czech-Austrian border crossing in Dolni Dvoriste on Monday instead of the planned blockade, and will not cause problems for transport, Agricultural Chamber president Jan Veleba said.

A crisis team today decided on a milder form of the protest based on Wednesday's talks between representatives of the Agriculture Ministry, farmers, processors and retail chains.

Farmers will voice protest to draw attention to Czech pig breeders jeopardised by rising imports of meat.

More than 200 farmers carrying banners will participate in the protest, said Veleba.

On Tuesday, farmers threatened to blockade the border crossing due to rising imports of pork to Czech retail chains. They picked the Austrian border because the retail chain Interspar has recently launched pork imports from Austria and cancelled sale of Czech meat in more than a half of its outlets.

Retail chains Ahold and Tesco also sell foreign meat.

The Agricultural Chamber said Czech meat producers lose more than Kc2.4bn a year due to imports.

Agriculture Minister Petr Gandalovic was opposed to the blockade and initiated Wednesday's talks of the farmers, meat processors and retailers.

Source: Prague Daily Monitor

5m Editor