German minister announces plan for excise tax on meat
Germany’s Agriculture Minister Cem Özdemir (Greens) has announced the cornerstones of a new tax which will see the cost of meat products increase by a “few cents”.
Özdemir outlines Germany’s new meat tax
Dubbed the “animal welfare cent” (Tierwohlcent), German Agriculture Minister Cem Özdemir has outlined how Germany’s new excise tax on meat products will work.
“Meat, meat-based products and the by-products of slaughter” are to be taxed, Özdemir explained to the Bundestag floor, saying that the tax amount is yet to be decided, but the system will be based on Germany’s existing coffee tax. In line with the “Tierwohlcent” name, meat products are only expected to get a few cents more expensive.
The new tax would follow another animal agriculture regulation recently introduced by Özdemir, which now requires meat production companies in Germany to give information about animal holding methods on the packaging of food.
Government must support agriculture to become more climate friendly
"When Currywurst becomes more expensive, the fear of a sh*tstorm is great,” the minister said during his speech, anticipating what the reaction among Germany’s meat lovers may be.
But Özdemir underlined that Germany’s agricultural sector had little choice but to change its methods quickly. “Our agricultural workers know, that they have to continue to change as they did in the past. When the circumstances change due to consumer desires, climate crisis or species extinction then it is clear, you can’t ignore it.”
“Making agriculture future-proof means strengthening our rural areas,” he added, emphasising that it was the responsibility of the government, not just to set climate goals, but to accompany the sector as changes are made - and that costs must be covered so that farmers’ efforts are recognised with fairer prices.
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