German Official Calls for Food Price Hikes

Germany’s new agriculture minister, Cem Ozdemir, has called for the price of foodstuffs and agricultural goods to be raised so citizens appreciate the value of food.

He told Bild am Sonntag over the weekend that “giveaway prices” drive “farms into ruin, prevent better animal welfare, promote the extinction of species, and pollute the climate.”

“Sometimes I get the feeling that a good engine oil is more important to us than a good salad oil,” Ozdemir said, adding that, while foodstuffs should not be turned into luxury goods, prices must more clearly reflect “the ecological reality.”

The minister’s push is in line with his Green Party’s policy, but it comes at a time when inflation is at a three-decade high, with food prices in Germany having risen by 4.5% this year.

Ozdemir’s proposal has been widely criticized, with the Christian Democratic Union MP and Member of the European Parliament Dennis Radtke saying on Twitter:

“Anyone who simply increases taxes and drives prices up does not change the conditions. Farmers don’t profit, little people are punished. You have to be able to afford green.”

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