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Giant dairies developed markets in Eastern Europe

Tags: Excerpts from the Windmill

WAGENINGEN – It appears that West European dairy giants have their own development aid programs. A Wageningen University researcher and her Louvain colleagues documented in a recent article that Friesland-Campina and its competitors Meggle (German) and Danone (French) quietly aided farmers in Poland, Slovakia, Rumania and Bulgaria with ‘soft’ loans to improve their herds and quality of milk. The dairies also helped farmers with practical advice, involving veterinarians as well, and where scale allowed, financed the purchase of milk tanks. The giant three also snapped up many smaller dairy processors in those countries, the researchers discovered, who also reported that they created a local market for those products through supermarkets, now often controlled by Western grocery chains. Some of the products find their way to Western European markets as well.