- The L214 association broadcast horror images of a sow slaughterhouse located in Finistère.
- Owned by the Les Mousquetaires group, the establishment had already been warned by the health authorities of its breaches of the rules.
- Images of injured animals but also abuse suffered by misdirected sows have been revealed. The association filed a complaint. The company has decided to suspend the production line.
The pictures show what you never see. An aging slaughterhouse interior where thousands of sows are piled up every week to be killed and then cut up. The videos shot by the L214 association are never pleasant to watch. Those carried out in February within the walls of the Société briécoise d’attage (SBA), in Finistère, are no exception.
In this unit owned by the Intermarché group, “cull” sows are slaughtered. Called “coaches”, these females often aged three or four years are “at the end of their careers” after a life spent on a slatted floor giving birth to piglets, of which they will quickly be deprived. Without seeing the light of day, or almost. Their last trip is no better. In the images shot by L214, we see animals injured but above all panicked, who try to escape. Without a solution, the employees use electric prods, sometimes in the eyes or the anus, to make them move forward in a bad tunnel. The horror reaches its peak in an undersized immobilization box where workers use an electric gripper to subdue the most vehement sows. A painful and forbidden practice.
A site already notified in 2016
This Tuesday, the association lodged a complaint against the Agromousquetaires group for “serious abuse”. She also filed a liability action against the State, which she accuses of breaches. Because the establishment of Briec had already been pinned in 2016, after a wave of audits requested by the Minister of Agriculture at the time, Stéphane Le Foll. Nonconformities had been revealed during the immobilization and during the journey towards what the authorities call “the trap”. “Nothing has been done since and these images prove it,” said Sébastien Arsac, one of the spokespersons for L214. There are real structural problems and they are not resolved. The employees do what they can and we don’t want to overwhelm them. But these images shocked us, they show that the regulations, which are already minimal, are not respected. There is suffering. “
The company suspends the production line
The use of an electric stinger is, for example, prohibited in any establishment labeled organic or Label Rouge. “The images are shocking and the management of the Société briécoise d’attage understands the emotion they can arouse in the public. As soon as these images were taken into consideration today, the management of Société Briécoise d’Abattage decided, as a precautionary measure, to temporarily suspend the production line concerned, ”the group reacted in a press release.
The L214 association hopes for “an immediate administrative closure” of the slaughterhouse, the time to conduct a precise audit within the establishment. The company evokes for its part “internal audits and investigations which were immediately carried out, in conjunction with the health authorities”. In this slaughterhouse, which sees 2,300 sows pass per week, the agrifood group prepares certain pieces of cold meats used in pâtés, rillettes or sausages. Not really noble pieces which are then used for the design of products of Intermarché brands but also of well-known customers such as Aosta, Hénaff or Bordeaux Chesnel. “On its site, the slaughterhouse wants to show that it has good practices and takes animal welfare into account, but the reality is quite different. What we want is to denounce these routine practices. We have more than five hours of footage in which we see the offenses. We would not understand that he does not close ”, continues the activist of L214.
“Why are they not doing anything? However, they have the means ”
Heavyweight in slaughter in Brittany, the Intermarché group has three establishments. This is the first time that the retail chain has been singled out by the association for the defense of animal welfare. “What we don’t understand is why they don’t do anything. Yet they have the means. This is not a small slaughterhouse in the town, ”criticizes the association.
For several months, the association has revealed several cases of animal abuse, especially in chicken farms in Vendée and in the Côtes d’Armor. But also in a duck farm used by the foie gras industry, located in Lichos, in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques. Administrative inquiries were opened to shed light on the living conditions of the animals.