French poultry processor Tilly-Sabco has blamed the end of EU subsidies, the high level of the euro and the lack of government support for its decision to suspend exports in January.

Tilly-Sabco has been vocal in its warnings of the potential impact the end of EU subsidies for poultry exports could have on the sector. Yesterday (31 October), the company said it would halt exports, reportedly around 90% of its business, on 4 January.

"In the absence of financial support from public authorities, the industry cannot withstand - despite productivity efforts - the end of export subsidies, the collapse of export prices and the high level of the euro," the company said.

Tilly-Sabco said it was aware of "the serious financial and social consequences" of its decision. It claimed the move could affect over 1,000 jobs - both at the company and externally - in Brittany.

Last month, Tilly-Sabco CEO Daniel Sauvaget warned the EU's decision to end subsidies to support poultry exports from the bloc could hit 4,000 jobs in France's poultry sector.

Since the subsidies have been axed, market prices have fallen by more than 30%, leaving the door open to Brazilian producers to capture business held by French firms, he added.

Sauvaget also put forward the idea of merging with fellow French poultry group Doux, which has also criticised Brussels' move.

Doux, however, brushed off the suggestion and said "an alliance, merger or any other transaction" with Tilly-Sabco was "not on the agenda".