French vineyard owners staged a protest march in Burgundy yesterday, Agence France Presse reports. More than 2,000 people marched through Chalon-sur-Saone, protesting at the lack of government help for the wine industry in France.

The agency reported that the wine business feels it is being unfairly targeted in a government campaign against alcoholism and drink-driving.

Yesterday, just-drinks reported that the Bordeaux wine federation, the CIVB, has been taken to court by an alcoholism prevention group over its recent advertising campaign. The hearing, set to take place on March 8, focuses on a complaint about the CIVB's slogan "Drink less, drink better."

Action against wine advertising comes at a time when growers and traders are having to cope with a sustained slump in sales at home and abroad. Exports of Bordeaux and Burgundy wines fell by 7% and 8% respectively in 2003.