A farmer is just a banker

A dot on the European map, the Netherlands. Despite the lack of land, unprecedented in agriculture. How is that possible? Dutch farmers are like bankers. Yes, of course, they like to blame bankers for all their misery. In the meantime (European) rules are bypassed and cheerfully stirred by this community of hard-working entrepreneurs.

Dutch farmers have an unprecedented urge to improve the world. More food at low prices. And at even lower costs. Who can be against it? When the numbers increase, the profits also increase. The bureaucrats of Europe also wants to achieve a number. For their own objectives. For example in the field of public health. Rules and accounting requirements are poured out over the farmers. Where the farmers in France are going on strike for more subsidy, and Italian farmers get the best products together, Dutch farmers see their chance. As a banker they go through the accounting. Half a cow, yields more than a whole? Then you make half of it. Earlier there was some commotion about it. But with the help of the government that is also covered with the cloak of love.

Now chickens and pig farmers appear to have more animals in their stables than specified. Some 300 farmers turned out to be a out of ballance with their administration in 2017. De Groene, a highbrow Dutch magazine,  investigated:

“According to the fertilizer law, farmers have to buy or lease an ‘animal production right’ for every chicken and pig. The Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority (nvwa) checks whether the actual number of animals in the stalls corresponds to the production rights of the farmer. At our request, the nvwa set out the findings of its inspectors. In 2017, 188 companies were visited and at as many as 68 farmers (36 %) too many animals were found. In 2015 and 2016, a total of 159 farmers were cautht. ‘Huge numbers’, experts say, much more than was previously assumed.

In our search for paper figures and real animal numbers, we also discovered hundreds of industrial livestock farms, the so-called mega stalls, which give far fewer animals than one would expect on the basis of their permits. We found that controls on animal numbers are completely inadequate and we have even been able to point out to one supervisor, the National Institute for Environmental Hygiene (rivm), a serious error in the administration, as a result of which it has reported to Europe not enough polluters for years. ”

Of course this is all stashed away. Errors at control authorities, insufficient supervision due to budget problems in government departments. But not reported: a fantastic lobby by farmers’ organizations. Here, too, farmers resemble bankers. Rules are for everyone, but less for them. They, the farmers, serve a higher purpose, which no one can oppose? Who would not want an egg with his well-invested sandwich.

Do you want to learn to think like a farmer or banker, then play theGREEDgame.

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