Heavy rains bring hardship on Dutch farmers

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Torrential rainfall over the past months have driven scores of Dutch farmers in the eastern province of Gelderland to the brink of bankruptcy.

Agricultural umbrella organisation LTO Netherlands said on Thursday that growers of crops like potatoes, flower bulbs and suger beet are most affected. Their crops rotted on the drenched fields.

Depending on the size of the farm damages amount to between a hundred thousand and one million euros. The total damage in the Achterhoek region of Gelderland province is estimated at 25 million euros.

The area a little to the north, the region of Twente in Overijssel province, was hit by the same rains, but there the drainage systems are far better, according to LTO.

It is nearly impossible for farmers to get insured against damage by excessive rain. Their umbrella organisation has said it will put in a claim with the local water authorities in Gelderland province for failing to provide adequate drainage.

© Radio Netherlands Worldwide

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