Tilly-Sabco gears up for life after - On Thursday 6 June, Tilly-Sabco, the Brittany-based poultry company, called for a “negotiated way out” of the export refunds granted to the poultry sector that could build up a long-term, traditional French export business in the Middle East. The company’s chief executive, Daniel Sauvaget, said that “we must realise that the European Union would, in the near future, like to bring this special scheme to an end and move from a subsidised model to a self-sufficient one”. He pointed out that subsidies for exports to third countries, which have been called into question in the context of the forthcoming common agricultural policy review, have declined steadily over recent years, falling from €480/tonne in 2007 to €108 in 2013.
The Finistère-based company, which generates 91% of its turnover from exports to Saudi Arabia and Yemen, is the second-largest French exporter of poultry to third countries, behind its rival Doux. Daniel Sauvaget, who is also chairman of the poultry council at FranceAgriMer, called on the industry to pursue a joint effort to reduce production costs in order to compete with its Brazilian rivals, who also supply the Middle East. The plan put forward by Daniel Sauvaget is that a third of the burden be borne at the industry level, another third upstream and the final third through a global development fund that would come into play degressively during the next CAP. “It is not a question of constituting disguised refunds but about aid for restructuring the sector”, which could in his opinion be paid from the second pillar. This development aid, which he estimates at 80 million euros, could be managed within the framework of a “cluster” to safeguard the use of public funds.