Used to investigations and hidden cameras, the animal protection association L214 now denounces the conditions of transport of turkeys and turkeys and the mistreatment they suffer. Even at European Union level, the transport of live animals remains a source of thorny debates.
Animals beaten into cages
The images, filmed in March 2022 in an intensive farm located in Sainte-Anne-sur-Brivet (Loire-Atlantique) and in a slaughterhouse located in Morbihan, reveal the horrible conditions of transport of animals already very weakened by their living conditions. . Once caught, the turkeys are crammed into cramped cages, sometimes kicked. The birds, therefore, find themselves compressed, locked in painful positions on top of each other in cages that are overlapping. The turkeys will be transported to the slaughterhouse in these same inadequate cages. These animals can stay”for hours in terrible conditions“, comments the musician Petit Biscuit, spokesperson for the association for the occasion.
This video highlights the recurring problem of transporting live animals. According to the European Council Regulation (EC) No. 1/2005 of December 22, 2004 on the protection of animals during transport, “means of transport are designed, constructed, maintained and used in such a way as to prevent injury and suffering to animals and to ensure their safety“; “staff handling animals have the necessary training or skills and carry out their duties without resorting to violence” and “Sufficient space and height are provided for the animals, taking into account their size“. The regulations specify that the animals’ natural movements must not be impeded and that they must be able to stand.
“There is a laissez-faire of the French authorities”
For L214, who claims to have already noticed this problem in 2021, “this violation of regulations persists in the absence of willingness to enforce the legislation by the various links of the intensive agriculture system“. The association had already submitted a complaint to the European Commission for violation of EU law and another complaint against the slaughterhouse. Today it presents a complaint against livestock, completes the complaint against the slaughterhouse and also renews that of the European Commission with which it intends to have a interview, approach supported by Caroline Roose (Greens/ALE), Younous Omarjee (GUE/NGL) and Claude Gruffat (Greens/ALE).
“The European Commission has the possibility to initiate infringement proceedings when it has evidence of a failure by a Member State to apply European law.explains the Science and Future, Lady Rose. The procedure begins with a formal notification from the European Commission to the State concerned. The latter usually has two months to respond. The Commission can then require the State to take the necessary measures to comply with European legislation. And if you are not satisfied, you can appeal to the Court of Justice. If the latter agrees with the Commission, the State must then apply the envisaged measures. As a last resort, the Court of Justice may impose a financial penalty“.
What could an interview between L214 and members of the European Commission really lead to? “Firstly, it is important that the European Commission initiates this infringement procedure because there are repeated and systematic infringements and a laissez-faire attitude on the part of the French authorities“, protests the MEP.
Furthermore, the transport of animals is known as a thorn in the side of the European Union. “EU rules on animal transport are outdated, inconsistent and poorly enforced“, even admitted, on January 20, 2022, the European Parliament. Among the most egregious violations identified are the insufficient height of the cages, the lack of water and food, the transport of many animals or under extreme temperatures. problems continue to be the transport of animals to third countries outside the EU.There is therefore no control system, regretted several MEPs.
The European Commission is therefore working on a reform of the rules on the transport of animals in order to provide them with better protection. “It is therefore important to be fully aware of the gaps in the legislation in force and to provide clear rules, sufficient to guarantee the protection of animals and the mechanisms to ensure their application. L214 investigation is crucial for this“, assures Ms. Roose.