Euphoria among Dutch dairy farmers

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From today’s Volkskrant (clunky translation mine):

The “milk ponds” and “butter mountains” of Europe are history. For the first time in almost 40 years, Dutch dairy farmers don’t have to ask Brussels for subsidies. Prices on the world market are rising so fast, that they can stand on their own legs…

“The mood is euphoric,” says Klaas Johan Osinga, policy adviser of [farmers' organization] LTO Nederland. “Before, the dairy sector was ruled by Brussels. Now it will happen through the free market.” In rising economies like China demand for dairy is climbing fast. At the same time, supply is stagnant because of, among other things, drought in Australia. …

I’ve known a few Dutch dairy farmers in my day (not in Holland but Tulare County, California). It’s pretty hard to imagine them being euphoric about anything.

Anyway, I’m happy for them, but I do wonder if this isn’t one more sign that Lester Brown is right and we’re headed for an age of food shortages.

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