Thousands of farmers demonstrated across France, destroying imported and home-grown produce and blocking border posts and highways. The nationwide action, by the National Federation of Farmers Unions, representing more than half of France's 1.2 million farmers, was to protest European Community farm-price policies. The demonstrations began as Community talks on fixing 1983-84 farm prices opened in Brussels. Farmers massed at Spanish and Belgian border posts, systematically checking the contents of heavy trucks entering the country.
On other fronts, news was mixed for the French government. It secured a multibillion-dollar loan from the European Community to shore up its huge trade deficit, but its Communist Party partner signaled it would take a tougher line with the government.