PARIS, July 18 (Reuters) – France will ban from next year the slaughter of male chicks by crushing or gassing, a practice denounced as barbaric by animal rights associations, and will push for a similar measure at the level European, said the Minister of Agriculture on Sunday.
Each year, 50 million male chicks are slaughtered in this way, said Julien Denormandie in an interview published on the website of the daily Le Parisien. Only the females, future laying hens, are kept alive.
“France is the first country in the world, along with Germany, to end the crushing and gassing of male chicks,” added Denormandie.
The two countries will try to convince their partners in the European Union to ban the practice at an EU agriculture ministers’ council on Monday, he said.
From 2022, breeders in France will instead have to equip themselves with machines to detect the sex of chicks before they hatch.
“The momentum is well underway and, given the orders already placed, the machines will be installed for two-thirds of production in France by the end of the first quarter of 2022,” added Denormandie.
The measure is expected to result in an additional cost of 1 euro cent per box of six eggs, he said.
To help breeders buy the equipment, France will provide grants totaling 10 million euros ($ 11.8 million).
The castration of live piglets will also be prohibited from the start of 2022, Denormandie said.
(1 $ = 0,8471 euro)
Report by Sybille de La Hamaide and Gwenaelle Barzic; Editing by Pravin Char
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