France rolls out supports for livestock farmers

France has announced a €290m plan to help livestock farmers protesting against a slump in pork and milk prices, and poultry farmers facing a freeze in output due to the spread of bird flu.

French Agriculture Minister Stephane Le Foll said the government would also provide an additional €500m in cash advances, Reuters reports.

Livestock farmers have been blocking roads in several parts of Brittany, in north-western France, with trailers, tractors and piles of mud for over a week in protest against low prices.

The financial aid comes in addition to an initial plan unveiled in September. 

That included tax rebates and support for investment, co-funded by the European Union and French regions, worth €3bn over three years, Le Foll said.

“All these measures are to help pass an extremely difficult moment but will not compensate all the losses linked to the fall in prices,” Le Foll said.

Livestock farmers facing a slump in prices would receive €125m of the new aid package, the minister said.

The local branch of France’s largest union, Fnsea, and the young farmers’ union said 20% of pig farmers were close to bankruptcy and another 20% are in great difficulty.


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