Saturday, June 15 2024

Farmers protest rising production costs in Thessaloniki


Greek farmers and other representatives of the primary sector held a big rally outside the annual Agrotica trade fair in Thessaloniki on Saturday to protest over rising production costs.


The farmers – hit by rising costs and crop damage caused by recent floods and wildfires – gathered around the conference center hosting the event to underline their determination to escalate protests by blocking highways. 

Protesters gathered from Thessaly and other areas of Greece shortly after noon with representatives of the Larissa and Karditsa farmers’ federations saying that they intend to escalate their protests in the coming days.

They threw chestnuts and apples on the street and then marched to the TIF grounds, holding banners and shouting slogans.  

Following speeches, the farmers joined their colleagues from Central Macedonia, who have stationed themselves at TIF’s southern gate with their tractors since Thursday. The latter will leave on Sunday, when the Agrotica Fair concludes, while they have all expressed their intention to return to highway blockades.

On Friday, the Greek government rushed out a new support package that includes tax rebates, a five- month discount on electricity rates, debt relief and a promise to speed up the delivery of flood recovery funds in central Greece.

Farming associations at the Thessaloniki protest on Friday described the measures as a “drop in the ocean” and promised to intensify highway blockades starting this weekend.