“Shouldn’t we talk about our point of view?”

In his address from the throne, King Willem-Alexander showed understanding for the sentiments that lived among farmers and said that the Cabinet would do its best to create broad support for the required measures. Remkes is expected to make recommendations this month based on the nitrogen consultations.

However, it will not be limited to nitrogen. Remkes will also come up with recommendations for more support and a farmer’s perspective. Because ostensibly, the nitrogen debate revolves around, in essence, what is responsible for rural agriculture and horticulture and how much space will be given to farmers and horticulturalists in the next decade.

This is exactly the reason why Remkes has expanded his mission and is also considering a farmer’s perspective.

Until now, the government was expected to come up with a clear vision for the future of the agricultural sector. But is this true? The government is there to set the frameworks, objectives and guidelines in the best case possible. Interpretation is up to the sector itself.

The discussion is not about nitrogen but about the agricultural future

Esther de Snow, Editor-in-Chief of New Harvest

The Netherlands has the world’s leading agricultural business. Surely it should be possible, with input from all parties in the chain, to pick up the challenge, get behind the wheel and come up with a clear and tangible vision for the future that aligns with stated policy principles?

Sectoral regulation of arable agriculture in the Netherlands works on such a plan. They searched their ranks for common interest within the chain, and cleverly looked at where there was room within the frameworks of government. By taking responsibility for yourself and organizing your future, resistance can be broken and support established in its place.

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