The cattle feed measure is dismissed, sources in The Hague confirm that the CCeit does not provide enough nitrogen reduction. Minister Schouten is expected to officially announce the decision later today. There was a lot of opposition to the measure from farmers.
The intention was that farmers would give their cows less protein-rich feed from September onwards, because this would lead to less nitrogen emissions. They said this is bad for the health of the animals.
The Minister has asked Wageningen University to review the measure. This re-calculation shows that the yield is minimal.
In front of the camera she doesn’t want to respond yet: “I’m going to inform the Chamber this afternoon. Then you’ll hear more.”
Schouten must now look for an alternative. The animal feed measure was one of the ways to create nitrogen space for the construction of 75,000 homes in 2020
Slingers at LTO, relief at Agraction
“We are ready to hang the garlands”, says Wil Meulenbroeks of LTO Netherlands. “We have worked very hard to get this measure off the table, that seems to be paying off. Farmers will not have to choose between the health of their animals or complying with regulations.”
“This will be a relief for many farmers”, says Bart Kemp of the farmers’ organization Agractie. “We are pleased that the cabinet understands that nitrogen reduction should not be achieved in this way, with risks for animal health, from behind the drawing board.”
Agraction stipulates as a condition for any new restrictive measures in agriculture that they must “never” lead to a deterioration in farmers’ incomes or pose risks to animal welfare
Dairy farmers: happiness prevails
“Relieved and happy”, Jeroen van Maanen of the Dutch Dairy Farmers Union responds. He points out that summary proceedings were scheduled for tomorrow in order to get the nitrogen measure off the table. “In view of the finish line, the measure is dismissed. But happiness must prevail,” he says.
New Hour found out earlier this week what the measure means for the farmer and the cow:
There are different reactions in the House of Representatives. GroenLinks-Kamerlid Bromet wonders: “What now?” According to her, a shrinkage of the herd is now inevitable.
Member of Parliament Wassenberg (Party for the Animals) agrees. He says that it has long been clear that a reduction in the number of animals is the only real solution. “The cabinet is doing everything it can to postpone a real decision. They’re just fooling around.”