In France, 50 million male chicks are killed every year. But from December 31, 2022 it is forbidden to eliminate them at birth, we can read in a decree published in the official newspaper, next Sunday, February 6. Enough to give French hatcheries time to organize themselves and change their practices, reports The world.
It was a promise from Agriculture Minister Didier Guillaume. In 2019, he promised to end the grinding of male chicks. We will have to wait a year longer than expected before this measure is applied in France.
Although this has long been requested by animal welfare associations, it nevertheless represents an additional cost for the structures involved, which specialize in the supply of laying hens to breeders. This cost is estimated at 64 million euros, or 4% of the sector’s turnover. The State should subsidize part of this for an amount of 15 million euros.
Invest in new machines
With these amounts, the five hatcheries involved can invest in new machines. Their goal: to determine the sex of the embryos in the egg. This operation, called “sexing” in ovum“, either in-egg sexing or “ovosexing”, makes it possible to eliminate the males before they hatch.
“Performers justify compliance with the implementation of the ban (…) by applying materials that make it possible to determine the sex of the embryo no later than the fifteenth day of incubation [sur vingt et un]or otherwise provide equivalent guarantees”we can read in the decree.
Hatcheries have until March 1, 2022 to order the necessary material for sexing in ovum and until December 31 to apply their new practices.