In Landunvez, “Avel Vor is not a mega-pig! – Piggery: Landunvez’s controversial project

“Of course, it’s also about earning a living, but the primary goal of this extension of breeding was to obtain enough volume to set up a work organization in four pairs and hire two people. It is also to pursue our goal of autonomy and to improve animal well-being”, reframes Philippe Bizien, before opening the way to a complete turn – “I have nothing to hide” – and without tension of his SARL Avel Vor.

Remember that its last expansion, regularized by the prefect of Finistère, in November 2022, is contested by an appeal to the administrative court and a criminal complaint. Since 2018, the SARL has had the prefectural authorization to possess, at the same time, up to 850 females (compared to 675 before) and just over 12,000 meat pigs (just under 9,000 before).

24,000 meat pigs per year

The visit begins with the peaceful room of the “grandmothers”, half selected by the breeder, directly from the herd of sows that will produce the pork-butchers. Attached to the control of his breeding, Philippe Bizien also points out that 80% of the cereals used in the diet of his herd come from his fields – “fertilized without fertilizer, with the exception of wheat” -, from those of neighbors or cooperatives. “Preparing the feed (a dozen different ingredients) also allows us to limit nitrogen emissions”.

Pigsty: Landunvez’s controversial project

The route continues in the maternity ward and then the boar room where the male Atlas entertains the staff, which amuses the youngsters from the schools or the leisure centers that the breeding regularly hosts. Then come the rooms for young fattening pigs and that of six-month-old animals, empty, this Friday morning. Every week, 400 or 600 pigs bred in the SARL Avel Vor take the road to the slaughterhouse in Châteauneuf-du-Faou. Over the year, the Landunvez facility supplied 24,000 meat pigs to the market.

” Medium sized “

Impressive numbers. However, Avel-Vor is a mega-pig, as its opponents repeat. Philippe Bizien refutes it firmly: “There is no mega-pig in France. If you want to find some, go to China where gigantic buildings bring together 26,000 sows. Here, we are on a family structure, with local capital. It is a medium sized facility. Specialized farms, like mine, there are larger ones (over 1,500 sows) in Finistère. And even in the canton (of Ploudalmézeau)”.

The Avel Vor pigsty, in Kerinizic, is very close to the town center of Landunvez and the Penfoul beach, where the Foul flows, a stream that crosses the farm. A source of contamination? “There has never been an incident on my farm”, slice Philippe Bizien, manager of the SARL since 1997. (Lionel Le Saux / Le Télégramme)

“Technical solutions to environmental issues”

This gives an argument to the standing wind associations against the extension of Avel-Vor, precisely because it is located in an area of ​​high livestock density, with an impact on the coastal environment of the Iroise country. . “A lot of farms have stopped in the area. The equivalent of 1,000 sows have disappeared in recent years”, intervenes Lucille Dormion, breeding manager of the SARL.

“Faced with environmental issues, technical solutions must be put in place”, resumes Philippe Bizien. “What we have done here by investing hundreds of thousands of euros in the installation of air washers in buildings, slurry pumps against overflows, embankments…”.

LANDUNVEZ (29): Philippe Bizien, manager, and Lucille Dormion, breeding manager of the Avel Vor pigsty in Landunvez
Philippe Bizien, manager, and Lucille Dormion, breeding manager of the Avel Vor pigsty in Landunvez, in the middle of the “grandmothers”. (Lionel Le Saux/The Telegram)

New extensions frozen

From the edge of the third tank of the slurry treatment station, the town center of Landunvez can be seen very close. Six children of the eight permanent employees (five live in Landunvez, one in Plourin, one in Ploudalmézeau) go to the village school. “Do you think we would school them there if we thought that breeding put them in danger? asks Lucille Dormion, treasurer of the parents’ association, “annoyed” by all the criticism from people who don’t live next door. “I’m better placed to talk about my job.”

However, the operation releases ammonia into the atmosphere. “70% captured by our air washer and centralized ventilation system”, specifies Philippe Bizien. I would also like to equip the old buildings of the 70s and 80s with these same devices and larger windows. For that, they would have to be enlarged. A surplus of surface area which would further improve working conditions and animal welfare, without increasing the herd. Only now is not the time to launch a new public inquiry.

Trout in the Foul

Accompanying us towards the exit, Philippe Bizien stops to exchange the piece of fat with a man who puts his fishing rods in the trunk of a car parked along an embankment, in the perimeter of the breeding. “This year, there are fario trout in the Foul (stream that crosses the farm and flows onto the beach of Penfoul, editor’s note)”, rejoices the amateur fisherman. “I swear I didn’t hire him as an extra,” smiles Philippe Bizien.

In Landunvez, political divide around the Avel-Vor pigsty

letelegramme Fr Trans

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