Dutch Plan to Cull Cows to Reduce Phosphate Production

NETHERLANDS - A three-pronged approach has been proposed to the Dutch government to reduce phosphate production from 2017, according to UK levy board AHDB Dairy.
calendar icon 25 November 2016
clock icon 1 minute read

At present, the Dutch phosphate limit is 172.9m kg (million kilograms), which has been exceeded for the past three years. Phosphates form a major component of animal manure.

LTO Netherlands, NZO, Nevedi, NAJK, NMV and Rabobank have compiled the plan, with €50m available for support, which is set to be agreed next year. If implemented, it could see a significant reduction in Dutch cattle numbers (approx. 175k head, 11 per cent) and, thus, milk production.

The plan would see a reduction in the dairy herd (with compensation), penalties for those producing more milk than a predetermined reference quantity and reducing the levels of phosphorus in compound animal feeds. The combined effect of this is expected to lead to a total reduction of 8.2m kg (2.5m, 4m and 1.7m kg, respectively, for each measure).

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