the Onetik cheese factory condemned for polluting a river

By Nicolas Laplume

This is the second time that the cheese factory, based in Macaye, has been condemned for polluting discharges into a watercourse.

The Onetik cheese dairy, located in Macaye in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques, was sentenced on July 8 to a fine of 10,000 euros for pollution. Between May 25 and June 3, 2021, flows were observed in a watercourse near the company. The pollution had been revealed by investigators from the French Office for Biodiversity (OFB). The management then explained that it was a breakage problem in the new treatment plant.

Already condemned

For these facts, the head of Onetik was the subject of a comparison on prior recognition of debt (CRPC) before the Bayonne prosecutor’s office on July 8. The prosecution thus proved that the cheese dairy did not respect the environmental standards of its installation.

This is not the first time that the company has been condemned for polluting discharges into the La Joyeuse river, considered a biological reservoir. In 2012, Onetik had already been fined 10,000 euros for pollution. The cheese dairy will be judged again on December 15 for other acts of pollution committed last June. In the meantime, the president of the cooperative has been placed under judicial control.

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