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For the third year in a row, tens of thousands of people from all over Germany went onto the streets in the capital at the start of International Green Week on Saturday 19.1.2013. The broad alliance of farmers, environmental and nature...
January 2, 2013 | Source: Living Maxwell | by Karin Heinze
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For the third year in a row, tens of thousands of people from all over Germany went onto the streets in the capital at the start of International Green Week on Saturday 19.1.2013. The broad alliance of farmers, environmental and nature conservation associations, church organizations and other groups motivated even more people than in previous years to take part in the mass demo. 25,000 demonstrators protested against cruelty to animals, agri-business and all its consequences and demanded reforms by the government that would lead to an ecologically beneficial and socially responsible form of agriculture.
The motto: “We’ve had enough! Good food. Good agriculture. Now!” once again brought together the most varied of groups. Farmers, beekeepers, vegetarians, politicians – a motley cross-section of citizens, some sporting imaginative costumes, marched holding banners aloft from the main railway station in Berlin through the government district to the office of the Federal Chancellor. 70 tractors and beekeepers’ vehicles from across Germany accompanied the protest. The concern shared by everyone present and the appeal was not to put the interests of agri-business at the heart of politics but to prioritize the interests of consumers and farmers, animals, nature conservation and environmental protection.
“We’ve had enough of agro-industry! exclaimed Felix Prinz zu Lowenstein, the chairman of the Bund Okologische Lebensmittelwirtschaft (Association of Producers, Processors and Marketers of Organic Food), to the people at the rally prior to the demonstration. “Let us join together in demanding a total change of direction regarding food!” said Lowenstein. “Renounce industrial livestock farming that treats animals as if they were objects in a production process. We demand responsible treatment of our fellow creatures! Renounce industrial agriculture that consumes resources and damages the environment. We demand the sustainable use of resources like land, water and biodiversity, that constitute the basis of our food supply! Renounce industrialized food that seems to be cheap but which in fact gives rise to huge costs because of the destruction of the environment, biodiversity and the climate. We demand food that deserves the name and whose price expresses the ecological truth!”