The case knows its outcome. 780 bulls, refused by Algeria following an administrative imbroglio between Paris and Algiers, were able to land on Friday, September 23, 2022, in Sète, announced the prefecture of Hérault, before they were slaughtered in Aveyron probably during this weekend.
After satisfactory sanitary tests, “The Prefect of Hérault, Hugues Moutouh, therefore authorized the ship to dock at the port of Sète, today, at 5 p.m.”the prefecture said in a statement. “The animals unloaded from the boat will be placed in cattle trucks and transported to their place of slaughter”it is specified. “The State has requisitioned the slaughterhouses of Rodez and Saint-Affrique to kill the bulls” concerned, Jacques Molières, president of the Aveyron Chamber of Agriculture, told AFP. According to him, the slaughter will have ” most likely “ take place over the weekend.
“I wonder about the logic of bringing nearly 800 bulls to Rodez and then sending them to the renderer in Agen. There are slaughterhouses between Sète and Agen”lamented Mr. Molières. “Going through Aveyron is not the shortest route between Sète and Agen. There were solutions in Castres or Toulouse ”he added.
On September 5, two days after the livestock transporter – an 81-meter vessel under the Togolese flag, 45 years old – left France – the Algerian authorities had banned the unloading of cattle on their soil.
The health status of three animals involved
The French authorities explained on Wednesday in Paris that a “difficulty in interpretation” of the health status of three animals was the cause of the blockage, ensuring that“there was no breach by the French authorities on the export certificate” allowing the animals to leave. Healthy bulls had been vaccinated against infectious bovine rhinotracheitis (IBR). However, documents attached to their export certificate bore the mention “IBR positive “, falsely suggesting that they were carriers of the virus, according to the Ministry of Agriculture.
Despite a clarification provided by France, Algeria still refused them entry into its territory. “for regulatory reasons”. After “fruitless talks”France decided to bring the boat back and slaughter these 780 animals because they had been “fed with hay” from Algeria, a country where another animal disease, foot-and-mouth disease, is present.
Friday, “the results of the analyzes and the veterinary visit do not show any sign of contamination with foot-and-mouth disease”underlined the Hérault prefecture, reporting a “calf found dead” and three others “deemed unfit for transport” who had to be euthanized.