Thousands of wine-growers in the departments of Gard, Aude and Herault in the French Midi demonstrated on Thursday (21 Jan.) against Government policy towards their industry.
SV Signpost "Trebes" PAN TO vehicles waiting & smoke
GV PAN Line of vehicles & fire.
SV Burning tyres
SV Fire PAN TO car ablaze under railway bridge
SV Burning car.
LV Fire on railway tracks
GV Fires next to bridge
GV Demonstrators watching train stopping.
SV Demonstrators on tracks and around train
SV & CU Imported wine pouring from wagon
CU Wine running away TILT TO wagon emptying.
Initials CM/PMW/BB/0130 CM/PMW/BB/0155
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Background: Thousands of wine-growers in the departments of Gard, Aude and Herault in the French Midi demonstrated on Thursday (21 Jan.) against Government policy towards their industry.
The growers, many of them from small family concerns, say they are hard-hit by taxes, depressed prices, and foreign imports of wine.
Some of the most violent demonstrations took place at Trebes, near Carcassone. Angry growers held up a train on the Narbonne-Carcassone railway line with blazing obstructions, and poured away imported wine in its wagons.
Higher costs and lower prices to growers have had a number of causes during 1971, but the beginning of a wine common market has caused special difficulty for French producers. The Common Market has allowed Italy to export to France since June 1970 1.5 million hectolitres of wine, while France has exported to Italy only 200,000 hectolitres.
Organisations representing the growers have called for controls on the entry of foreign wine into France, lower taxes on wine, and a guaranteed sale for wine stocked by contract with the Government.