Peru: 72 hour strike to protest against potato imports

The Peasant Confederation of Peru, which groups thousands of farmers, has started a 72-hour strike to persuade the government to declare an emergency status for the potato sector and the country's agricultural sector.

They also demand that the government apply a true agrarian policy that guarantees the country's food security and sovereignty.

In addition, they want the farmers' debts to be forgiven and compensation for those who suffered losses in potatoes and other crops. They are also demanding the extension of agricultural insurance coverage.

Jesus Aliaga Peña, the president of the Users Board of the Cunas Basin, in the province of Chupaca, said that some 3,000 farmers in the region had marched peacefully to protest against the low prices of agricultural products, such as potatoes, quinoa, garlic, onion, barley, and wheat, among others.

"We market our products in the national market and the importation of potatoes is affecting the national industry. The imported potatoes enter the market at 70 cents and importers are bringing large quantities of precooked potatoes from the Netherlands. The big poultry shops stop buying the national production and acquire that of other countries. As a result, only 14% of the country's production is being consumed," stated Aliaga Peña.

Farmers from Ayacucho, Junin, Andahuaylas, Huancavelica, Huanuco, and other southern regions are participating in the 72-hour strike.


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