mad throughout Europe:
Commercial fishermen throughout Europe launched new protests Friday against soaring fuel bills, blockading ports and refineries in France and handing out fresh fish for free in Madrid.
The protests against diesel fuel costs have been simmering all week, with truckers in Britain blocking highways and fishing vessels halting port traffic on the English Channel in France.
....In Portugal, fishing fleets also stayed in port and in one harbor at Peniche, in central Portugal, skippers strung their boats together with mooring lines to prevent other vessels from unloading. Portuguese fishing boat owners, who employ some 21,000 people aboard almost 5,000 boats, were pressing demands for government help by choking off the supply of fresh fish to markets.
....In Italy, fishing unions claimed widespread support for a strike Friday....
Speaking of Italy, the pigs are threatening the bacon being brought home:
The Italian Farmers Association (CIA) on Thursday warned that Italy may soon be in the grip of a national prosciutto shortage after Italian pig farmers confirmed they will be going on strike this weekend.
''Parma ham, San Daniele and Tuscan prosciutto, Piacenza pork neck salami, Brianza, Varzi and Vicenza salami and Italian game salami could shortly disappear from supermarkets and specialist shops and vanish from Italian tables,'' CIA said.
Italian pig farmers faced with spiralling production costs and falling pork prices have been lobbying the government for financial assistance since the beginning of the month.
They announced a national strike beginning on June 1 after talks with the agriculture ministry on Wednesday proved unsuccessful.
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