The Department of Agriculture, Bord Bia and ICOS have all condemned the animal welfare breach at the French facility

A spokesperson for the Department of Agriculture said: “The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine has been made aware of the circulation of a video identifying an instance of ill-treatment of calves travelling from Ireland to Europe, at a French control post.

“The Department condemns the ill treatment of any animals, particularly of vulnerable animals such as unweaned calves.

“The Department is liaising closely with the French authorities and will provide every assistance possible.

“The Department takes appropriate enforcement action where non-compliance with the relevant legal framework is identified. It would not be appropriate to make any further comment on this matter at this time.”

Bord Bia’s Seamus McMenamin said: “Bord Bia is aware of a breach of animal welfare standards at a lairage in Cherbourg involving Irish calves en route from Ireland to Europe, and strongly condemns this mistreatment of livestock. Bord Bia will support the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine which is liaising with French authorities investigating the incident, and will continue to engage with all stakeholders involved in the live export sector on this matter.”

The Irish Co-Operative Society (ICOS) said: “ ICOS notes the recent Department announcement regarding the temporary closure of a calf assembly centre in Cherbourg. The issues behind the closure are serious in nature and must be investigated thoroughly and resolved immediately.”