Protesting French farmers turn on their own leaders

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Despite the French government's attempt to calm the situation, angry farmers are continuing to protest over the prices they are receiving for their produce. On Sunday evening a group of farmers even went to the home of agriculture minister Stéphane Le Foll to demand action. But as Mediapart's Karl Laske found when he visited Finistère in Brittany in the west of France, farmers are not only angry with politicians – but with their own union leaders and local cooperatives too.

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Night had fallen on February 11th and disgruntled farmers in the Quimper region of Brittany in the westernmost tip of France had found another target on which to vent their anger over the low prices they get for their produce. This time it was not a local supermarket or government building. Instead these farmers took their trailers full of manure to spread at the Chamber of Agriculture itself, the body that is supposed to represent their interests. This building, run by the leading French farming union the Fédération nationale des syndicats d'exploitants agricoles (FNSEA), was attacked with a digger, the entrance hall was bashed and dented, the entrance guardrail ripped out and the ground was covered in manure.