Around 600 protesters have marched through Bordeaux streets in response to a television documentary raising concerns about the amount of pesticides used in the region.

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An alliance of campaign groups, including Confédération Paysanne and Générations Futures, urged people to take part in the Bordeaux pesticide protest last Sunday (14 February).

Organisers reported a ‘great success’ for the event after seeing an estimated 600 protesters join them in the streets.

Bordeaux pesticide protest

One protester wears a gas mask during the Bordeaux  march. Credit: Générations Futures, Nadine Lauverjat, Picasa

The move follows a television documentary on France 2 entitled ‘pesticides, our children at risk’, which pin-pointed the Gironde region that includes Bordeaux as one of the biggest pesticide users in France.

More than 3m people watched the documentary, including the president of the Bordeaux wine council (CIVB), Bernard Farges. He told Decanter.com that he watched ‘the whole documentary, from start to finish, with careful attention’.

The other bodies involved in organising Sunday’s march were Collectif Alerte Pesticides Léognan, Les Amis de la Terre and Allassac ONGF.

Générations Futures, an environmental campaign group, said that pesticides was ‘no longer just an issue for winemakers’. It was something that now concerned everybody in society, it said.

The CIVB has said little since the documentary, but stated that 45% of Bordeaux winemakers are registered as using sustainable agriculture, which includes a commitment to cut pesticide use.