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Dutch farmers block supermarket warehouses in protests over government's green reforms

DUTCH farmers have continued protests that have seen supermarket warehouses blocked along with some of the main highways in the Netherlands over government plans to cut pollutant emissions. 

They argue that reforms, which include slashing the emission of pollutants including nitrogen oxide and ammonia by 50 per cent by 2030, will hit the country’s agricultural sector forcing farmers to reduce the number of livestock or cease operations altogether. 

Farmers explain that fertilisers contain a large amount of nitrogen oxide while ammonia is produced naturally in the urine and faeces of livestock. 

Large-scale protests on Sunday were followed by demonstrations blocking supermarket warehouses across the country, Dutch state broadcaster Nederlandse Omroep Stichting (NOS) said on Monday. 

Dutch supermarket organisation the Central Bureau of Food Trade, said the blockade was “completely unacceptable.”

“We have called the judicial authorities and the police to take care of the situation,” spokesman Marc Jansen said. “We must be able to address this misconduct.”

He said supermarkets were “not party” to the stand-off, warning that food shortages may follow if the blockade continues. 

“Some distribution centres also supply hospitals, care centres and other vital services,” he added.

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