Photo does not show farmers protesting in Italy

5 February 2024
What was claimed

A photo shows a street filled with tractors in Verona, Italy.

Our verdict

False. The photo doesn’t show a protest in Italy, but a demonstration by French farmers in Paris in 2010.

A photo is being shared on social media with claims it shows a protest by farmers in the Italian city of Verona.

Posts on Facebook and X (formerly Twitter) include the image of a large number of tractors lining a street.

One 2 February post is captioned: “Verona 2 days ago. Silence on the TV/News medias… [sic]”.

However, this image is not from a recent protest, and was not taken in Italy. It is actually from a demonstration by French farmers in Paris in 2010, which was reported on by news outlets at the time.

The posts come amid protests across European Union states by farmers, including in Italy, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Ireland, Poland and Belgium.

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Where does the photo come from?

The photo was included in a French news report published in 2019, where it was captioned: “Demonstration of farmers at the call of the FNSEA in Paris, April 27, 2010, to protest against European agricultural policy.”

A reverse image search brings up the original photo on the Agence France-Presse (AFP) media archive, credited to photographer Fred Dufour. The description says: “French farmers demonstrate with their tractors on April 27, 2010 in Paris to protest against wages cut [sic] and to denounce the European Farm Policy.”

Very similar pictures of the protest are also available on the stock photography website Alamy.

In recent months farmers across Europe have mobilised over a range of issues, some country-specific, including falling incomes, rising bureaucracy and competition from imports, as well as changes to tax breaks around diesel and measures aimed to combat climate change.

In Italy on Saturday 3 February, farmers gathered in Orte, north of Rome and elsewhere, to protest against EU agriculture policies.

Farmers in France used tractors to block the highways and major roads to the capital on 29 January in a direct action dubbed the ‘siege of Paris’.

It’s important to check whether posts on social media show what is claimed before sharing them—to do this, you can read our guides on ways to spot misleading images and videos.

Full Fact has written about other misleading images and videos related to farmers’ protests in Europe, including a video of farmers supposedly digging up highways leading to Paris and manure being dumped outside a branch of McDonald’s.

Image courtesy of David Monniaux

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