Two opposing forces of the French farm industry clashed over the weekend as small farmers led by Jose Bove launched attacks on crops found on large farms where GM genetically modified crops are being grown. Police had to use tear gas to break up the growing conflicts as two opposing views on farming interact. Small farmers are more organically minded while the large French farm federation, FNSEA prefers a more scientific oriented approach to farming and relies on GM seeds.
Throughout French history, farmers have played a key role in the nation’s history and they continue being influential into the new century. As the size of the French farm population decreases, groups led by men like Jose Bove may well represent the past rather than the future.