Protesting EU Farmers Spray Cops With ... Milk?
They're protesting low milk prices
By Kevin Spak, Newser User
Posted Nov 27, 2012 9:32 AM CST
Police officers, left, are sprayed with milk by European milk farmers during a demonstration outside the European Parliament in Brussels, Nov. 26, 2012.   (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

(Newser) – Thousands of enraged dairy farmers converged on the European Parliament in Brussels yesterday, and sprayed the building, and the cops who showed up to contain them, with their stock in trade: milk. The protesters arrived on tractors, blocked traffic along many of the city's main streets, then pulled out hoses and let thousands of liters of the white stuff fly, Reuters reports. They also set fire to a trailer full of hay, and hung a nondescript body in effigy.

The farmers are demanding a 25% bump in milk prices, which they say have become untenably low, the BBC reports; In Belgium, for instance, a liter sells for about $0.34 wholesale, but costs about $0.52 to produce. Part of the problem: the EU sets an annual quota of about 143 tons of milk, more than Europe can consume. "It's very simple: you can't live off milk anymore," one French farmer said. "If I go on, it's thanks to European aid."

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Showing 3 of 35 comments
Nov 27, 2012 7:05 PM CST
Though I cannot laugh out of this situation, I still wonder whether the EU authorities have any control over the milk price. If not, then why the farmers protest them. In a free market, the entrepreneurs should take the risk of business; no one asks them to stay in this losing money business. Furthermore, why don't they reduce their loss by selling at any available price and that will also help the poor consumers! Maybe they, the 47% population, believe they fall victim to the EU economy system? or they just exercise the extra freedom of protest?
Nov 27, 2012 5:18 PM CST
Nov 27, 2012 1:52 PM CST
When the farmers produce something that costs more than what it can sell for, it is a crisis, not a funny story. In 1930s, did the US farmers ever drain down their milk product because they were rich or they were so upset? and any thoughtful and mindful people here ever compare the farmers' milk, their loss to the "milk" in the guy's XXX-movie mania brain?