France destroys over 500 kilos of ivory

Authorities in the southern French city of Nice on Wednesday destroyed more than 500 kilogrammes of ivory as part of the international campaign to end elephant poaching, the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) announced.

France destroys over 500 kilos of ivory
Illustration photo: AFP
Most of the so-called “white gold”, which comes from elephant tusks, was seized by the authorities during auctions or online sales, but 100 of the 563  kilogrammes (1,241 pounds) crushed came from members of the public responding to IFAW's “ivory surrender” campaign.
France banned all sales of elephant ivory and rhinoceros horn in 2016.
“France is sending a strong signal to the world about combatting the illegal trade in endangered species,” said Francoise Taheri, a senior official for the southern Alpes-Maritime region where Nice is situated. 
The operation was the third of its kind in France in four years and brings the total amount of ivory destroyed to over a metric tonne.
The ivory trade has been banned worldwide since 1989 but the ban does not cover sales of ivory obtained before then.

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Halal meat sold in France can’t be called organic, EU rules

Halal meat from animals slaughtered by religious ritual without having first been stunned cannot be labelled organic, on animal welfare grounds, a top European Union court ruled Tuesday.

Halal meat sold in France can’t be called organic, EU rules
Photo: AFP

The way the meat is slaughtered “fails to observe the highest animal welfare standards”, said the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU).

The case came to the court after the OABA, a French association promoting animal welfare in abattoirs, urged the agriculture ministry to ban the labelling of such meat as organic.

French courts initially dismissed the OABA's case before passing it up to the CJEU for a definitive ruling.

“The Court recalls that scientific studies have shown that pre-stunning is the technique that compromises animal welfare the least at the time of killing,” said an CJEU statement Tuesday.

Producers have to meet the highest animal welfare standards to qualify for the EU's organic label, the court noted.

So while the ritual slaughter of animals was allowed on grounds of religious freedom, if they were not first stunned then that did not meet the highest animal welfare standards.

The meat from such animals could not then qualify as organic.

The case will now go back to the Court of Appeal in Versailles, France, for a definitive ruling. 

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