Redistributive policy

Czech farmers protest against new small farm subsidy policy – ​​

Around 2,000 farmers gathered in Prague on Wednesday to protest the Czech government’s new policy of subsidies for small farmers, which they say will disrupt Czechia’s ability to produce food.

The demonstration on Wednesday June 8 was called by the Chamber of Agriculture, the Union of Farmers and trade unions. After a morning meeting, they marched to the government building, waving banners saying “The end of Czech cuisine” and chanting “There will be hunger!” “.

The events limited traffic in the capital, but there were no major disruptions to public order.

Large farm owners are criticizing the government’s recent decision to change the so-called redistributive payment, which farmers receive for the first 150 hectares of land.

For the next grant period, this payment will cover 23% of the direct payments for farmers with at least this amount of land, an increase of 10% compared to what was originally planned. Small farmers will thus receive more money.

This will leave farmers focused on food production struggling to survive, said Jan Doležal, president of the Chamber of Agriculture, at the event. Giving small farmers more money from the common pot will prevent medium and large enterprises from competing with businesses in neighboring countries, he added.

Labor and Social Affairs Minister Marian Jurečka (KDU-ČSL) promised that the government would support animal production and producers of important products such as potatoes.

The protest was criticized by the country’s Private Agriculture Association, representing small farmers, which is in favor of the changes.