September 17, 2003



France's Summer Heat Killed Almost 5 Million poultry


Almost five million head of poultry died in France due to the summer heatwave, industry group FIA said on Tuesday.


The FIA said four million chickens and 600,000 turkeys had died out of a total poultry population of 90 million, leading to losses amounting to about 50 million euros.


The heatwave also affected the growth of animals and created fertility problems, FIA said. Production is unlikely to return to normal before the second quarter of 2004.


"It looks like these consequences will be long-lasting and hurt the entire French poultry sector," FIA president Alain Melot said in a statement.


French consumption of poultry is about 28 percent of all meat consumed. The country is the European Union's main producer and the fourth largest exporter in the world after the United States, China and Brazil.