“The situation in the dairy sector is dramatic, if concrete action is not taken, we fear the sector will continue to collapse, dairy farms will continue to be closed, and the number of dairy cows will continue to fall, as will the quantity of milk produced,” the Croatian Chamber of Agriculture (HGK) said in a statement.
Igor Rešetar of the HGK Dairy Sector Committee says the Agriculture Ministry had done a lot in the past three years but not enough since dairy farms had been affected by crises on the global food and energy markets as well as by problems caused by the war in Ukraine.
Dairy sector representatives said that the farm gate price of milk had increased by 28% since June 2021 but that they received information from primary producers on a daily basis saying that their production costs had increased by more than 300%.
The farm gate price of milk should be increased because crop husbandry costs, which are also rising, will in the autumn affect cattle breeding and milk production, they said.
Dairy farmers also called for increasing subsidies, reducing VAT on dairy products as well as investment costs, etc.
Recalling the government support to the sector so far, the Ministry of Agriculture said in a statement that the government would continue providing comprehensive solutions and called on stakeholders in the dairy supply chain to invest additional effort in order to maintain the current production level.
The ministry also noted that work was underway on the adoption of a programme for the development of the national dairy sector in the period until 2030 with strategic goals, priorities and measures designed to make the sector stronger and more competitive.
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