Friedrich Solwang, The Debate | Friedrich Solwang confronted the farmers: – What are we doing?

Friedrich Solwang, The Debate |  Friedrich Solwang confronted the farmers: – What are we doing?

After stepping down from “The Debate” in favor of Melodi Grand Prix, Fredrik Solvang returned as debate leader on Tuesday evening. Food security is a topic in Norway.

Nordura has warned against a long-term egg shortage in Norway. This comes after egg producers were paid to stop production in 2023.

Because the farmers could not produce enough Norwegian milk, Dine had to make yogurt with German milk powder. At the same time, supply problems meant some farmers were told to pour milk, and last year farmers had to pay NOK 27 million in taxes for overproduction.

– But now there is a shortage of milk, so what are they doing, Solvang asked the guests of the agricultural cooperative in the “discussion”.

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In the “debate”, he explained that Nordura had started buying Norwegian eggs rather than foreign eggs, thereby creating a shortage of eggs in Norway, and that egg production abroad was suffering from disease.

Also Read: Nationwide Egg Shortage: Blame Corona and Illness

Abolishes production regulations

Fredrik Solvang points out that it is not a shortage of food, but an overproduction of food products that has led to the biggest scandals in the Norwegian food industry in recent years. He pointed out that a few years ago Nordura dumped Norwegian pork in Ukraine for NOK 10 a kilo, and sold Norwegian goat meat to Afghanistan at a huge loss, paid for by the farmers' own sales tax.

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For a long time, Norway produced more milk. Excess production was sold abroad at a loss, and was used to manufacture Jarlsberg.

Read: Tyne spends NOK 750 million to build Jarlsberg in Ireland

Erling Helmeng, a law professor at the University of Oslo, believes it is time to scrap the Norwegian market regulation system and let free market forces control food production. He believes that food crises would have been avoided if the responsibility for regulating the market had been spread outward through the conventional capitalist relationship between supply and demand.

– If you look at the Norwegian market regulation system, all the responsibility lies with the regulators. If they get it wrong, there will be dramatic consequences for the entire market. In other markets, risk is spread in an entirely different way, he says.

Rejected in Storing

In 2015, Erling Helmeng chaired the Market Equilibrium Committee, which proposed abolishing the role of the market regulator and allowing normal market forces to regulate these markets as well. Based on the committee's recommendations, the government proposed to abolish the egg market deregulation.

– Helmeng said in “Tibet” that it did not go to Storting, and today we see how the state is in that market.

He is supported by Frps Sylvi Listhaug, who believes it is time to abandon production regulation.

– We want to get rid of market regulation schemes, Listhaug said that the current problems of Norwegian food products disappearing from store shelves show that the scheme is not working.

– The entire system needs to be changed to get rid of these regulators, he said.

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Agriculture Minister Geir Pollestad responded that Norwegian agriculture does not work with free market forces. He believed that production would be concentrated around parts of eastern Norway.

– If we use conventional market principles for this, we will get more imports, it will be more difficult to farm across the country, Pollestad said that the market thinking of Listag and Helmeng is against Norwegian values. Ensure quality of food production.

Pollestad defended production regulation

Listag countered that a lot of food is made in Norway without restrictions on things like eggs and milk.

– No one realizes there is a shortage of chicken in stores, even if it doesn't work, a product outside of the “wonderful system” that Pollestad defends. There is no dearth of spinach, cucumber and tomato. Most of it is produced in Norway, and it looks good that you have a market regulator.

– An important difference between poultry, eggs and milk is that eggs and milk are produced throughout Norway. Poultry production is concentrated in slaughterhouses. That is precisely the effect of your proposition. We have agricultural production in some parts of the country, but we cannot use the resources of the entire country to produce food, and that is what it is all about. We could do better with less politics, Polstad said, but then we would have less self-sufficiency, less agriculture in the whole country, and more imports.

Professor Helmeng said there are other arrangements that could ensure production in Norway. For milk, there is a quota program, and Helmeng said the customs service will counter increased imports by canceling the market regulation program. Helmeng said dairy farmers should charge higher prices in the market, but the problem for farmers today is Dine's dual role as market regulator and producer.

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– The problem is Dine's dual role. Dine has some interests in the industry. Farmers have other interests. As diesel prices for Dyne rise, they drive down milk prices for farmers, leaving no room for farmers to raise their prices in the market, Helmeng said, while Dyne's dual role leads to distortions in competition with Q dairies. Synnøve Finden.

– Here there were many short circuits at the same time. “If we didn't have market regulation, we would have huge fluctuations,” said Björn Jimming, president of the Norwegian Farmers' Union, who is not entirely in favor of removing market regulation.

Joshi Akinjide

Joshi Akinjide

"Music geek. Coffee lover. Devoted food scholar. Web buff. Passionate internet guru."

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