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How Europe is fattening a Dutch pig farmer who doesn’t play by the rules

Giving farmers a reasonable income and ensuring that their farms are environmentally friendly are key objectives of the Common Agricultural Policy, which accounts for the largest share of the European budget. In practice, the support often disappears into the pockets of large, successful livestock farmers whose businesses emit significant amounts of nitrogen, such as pig trader Schuttert from Ommen.

By Tomas Vanheste and Sergio Nieto Solis | 11 March 2022

Pig trader Schuttert owns many hectares of land and thousands of pigs. Because of its size, it is one of the largest recipients of European subsidies. An investigation by The Investigative Desk for Follow the Money shows that the pig farmer sometimes anticipates his permits a little too much: not infrequently, he stalls pigs before he has received a permit. He almost always receives these permits afterwards.

Not all of his pigsties comply with current environmental permits. That too is no obstacle for expansion. As with the largest dairy farmer in the Netherlands, local and provincial authorities shirk their responsibility for enforcement.

Read the full article on Follow The Money

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