Food fight over Ukrainian grain: Will Eastern Europe’s farmers break EU solidarity?

The European Union has been caught off guard by a food fight. Last month, when Poland unilaterally announced it was shutting its borders to imports of Ukrainian grain, it came as a shock to policymakers in both Kyiv and Brussels. Farmers in the eastern EU member complained that a food glut was driving prices down, hitting their livelihoods. Several Central European states followed suit, imposing their own bans. In one fell swoop, the EU's policy of giving Ukraine's farmers tariff-free access to EU markets was at risk of unravelling. That has not happened – yet. A deal involving compensation to Poland's farmers has lifted the blockade and, for now, Ukraine's grain is crossing into Poland.