French poultry integrator fined for overcrowding
Groupe Doux, the largest poultry integrator in Europe
with an annual turnover of € 1.3 billion,
has been fined €30,000 by the Court of Appeal in
forcing some 15 farmers to keep more broilers than legally allowed. Farmers
working for Doux were fined a lower amount.
The case has been in progress for almost 10 years. First lawsuits were filed in 1998 when farmers inBrittany were discovered with over 20,000 maximum bird limit established by the EU .
Only five years later, in 2003, the role of Doux was taken into account when the case was researched on legal matters. The judge concluded that Doux was fully aware of the infringements at the farms. Doux also falsified documents in its administration by writing down lower numbers for the supply of baby chicks and the purchase of fattened broilers.
At first court case was about to be cancelled, because Brussels in the mean time has increased the maximum number of chickens to 30,000. However, the court in Rennes decided that Doux and his farmers had been violating the law.
Half of the fine will be rewarded to an organisation that is taking care of drinking water and the rivers in Brittany . Doux also has to pay for the costs of the court case.
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