Farmer President Klaus Wagner has complained about an enormous decline in the keeping of pigs and dairy cows in Thuringia. "We are experiencing a structural break in animal husbandry," said Wagner on Thursday. Animal stocks would be relocated from Germany. According to data from the State Office for Statistics, the number of pigs in Thuringia has fallen from more than 816,000 to a good 597,000 in the past ten years, and that of dairy cows from almost 109,000 to less than 86,000.
Wagner emphasized that if society demands more animal welfare, it must also be willing to pay for it. However, the federal government is providing far too little money for this. The farm official referred to the recommendation of experts for a levy to finance the conversion of animal husbandry and the necessary investments - for example in the form of a higher value added tax or an animal welfare levy on animal products. According to Wagner, changes in building law are also needed. The enlargement of stables must be made easier so that animals can have more space without reducing the stock and making keeping them less economical.
The farmers were also worried about EU plans to halve the use of pesticides in the coming years. The plans could spell the end of farming in some areas, Wagner warned. Without chemical crop protection, it is not possible to produce bread wheat of good quality and in sufficient quantities. From his point of view, new technology must be used in order to bring in the funds in a targeted manner.
On Thursday in Apfelstädt (Gotha district), the Thuringian Farmers' Association wanted to take stock, set priorities for the coming year and exchange views on current agricultural policy issues with representatives from politics and administration.
Statistics on the number of pigs in Thuringia Statistics on the number of cattle in Thuringia