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Italian Farmers Are Mobilizing, Set Demonstration for Jan. 22

On Jan. 22, Italian farmers will mobilize in a national day of protest. The action has been organized by Comitati Riuniti Agricoli (CRA), an organization born out of, and in antagonism to, established farmer associations, which the CRA has accused of complicity with the destruction of agriculture.

CRA leader Danilo Calvani has organized local caucuses throughout Italy in the last weeks, inspired by the protest of German farmers, and insists they have collected broad support for their action. The main demands are similar to their colleagues in Germany and other European countries: 1. Allow a cost-covering income for farmers; 2. Stop tactics of land-grabbing through pushing farmers into bankruptcy.

CRA wants to keep political parties out of their action, as they do not want to be identified with any party. They want to avoid what happened 10 years ago, when a protest born in Sicily which then expanded like wildfire throughout Italy, and nicknamed “Revolt of the Pitchforks.” According to media representations, the protest was kidnapped by rightwingers.