Sweet poultry farmer condemned on appeal to reimburse 80 million euros of undue subsidies


In 2010, Doux received 400 euros for each tonne of frozen chickens exported. But checks revealed that the animals had a water content higher than European standards.

The administrative court of appeal of Nantes (Loire-Atlantique) condemned Friday, July 17 the poultry farmer Sweet, bought by a consortium in 2018 after its liquidation, to reimburse nearly 80 million euros of European aid for export (called refunds) unduly received.

By seven judgments, the court obliged Doux to reverser this amount received “between 2010 and 2013 for its frozen chicken export operations”, according to a press release. “Sanctions included, the total in dispute amounts to more than 82 million euros”, according to the court, which thus confirms a judgment of the administrative court of Rennes of April 2018.

In 2010, each tonne of frozen chickens exported brought 400 euros to Doux, a boon for the leading European exporter, most of whose production was shipped to the Middle East. However, during inspections carried out in 2012 and 2013, the customs services discovered that these chickens had a water content higher than European standards, which, according to the Court of Appeal, prohibits access to European subsidies.

“Exports from the European Union of frozen chickens must, in order to be eligible for export refunds, comply with the same water content rules, that is, of fair, fair and marketable quality, as those required for sales in the territory of the European Union “, wrote the court in its press release. “It is therefore up to the company which claims to obtain the benefit of the aid to provide proof that the exported products meet these conditions”.

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