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‘Cyno Breeders’ – the Mauritian industry of capturing and breeding macaques

‘Cyno Breeders’ – the Mauritian industry of capturing and breeding macaques

Mis à jour le 15 March 2024

Among the names of macaque breeding farms in the Island of Mauritius, two names keep reoccurring: Noveprim and BioCulture. With their Mauritian counterparts, these two companies have formed the ‘Cyno Breeders Association’, dedicated to propaganda in favour of animal testing, for the financial interests of its members. But their lies pale in comparison to the footage that was only just reported by our investigators in 2023. We are asking that these establishments are closed down.

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Noveprim, created in the 1980s, is today half-owned by the Charles River company, which guarantees them a share of the American market. In Europe, its revenue is guaranteed by its Spanish centre, Camarney, which has sold more than 30,000 long-tailed macaques since 2005.

When it comes to BioCulture, its shareholders are companies run by other entities, going back to the Griffiths family which was established in the 1980s. Recently, a joint venture was set up with an Indian laboratory that carried out tests on animals.

From propaganda to reality

These two giants in primate trade collaborate with other local breeders from the Cyno Breeders Association, who themselves are also looking to promote animal testing at any cost, even if they are using shameful propaganda methods.

On this association’s website, we read that its members “opt for ethical practices that adhere to strict regulations and guarantee the highest standards of welfare for monkeys”. Our investigation, at one of these sites and during a capturing session by Noveprim, contradicts this with its footage.

According to what we see in the videos, welfare would therefore consist of a concrete cage combined with metal wire with, best case, a few plastic tunnels and ladders whose colour hardly cheers up the surrounding gloominess and oppressing acoustics. Not to mention the health risks, mutilations, or even illegal trafficking.

The economy against animals

Unfortunately, according to the European Commission, “it is not possible to contemplate a realistic way of only using primates from autonomous colonies in the short or long term”.

In fact, this ‘realism’ is a deliberate choice to always favour economical and industrial aspects to the detriment of animal interests. Clearly, breeding animals who have never felt the soil and grass beneath their feet is unacceptable. But captive individuals have one less source of suffering at least – being captured.

For a peaceful and shared future

Last year, long-tailed macaques were declared to be in danger of extinction in South Asia. In Mauritius, the situation is less clear.

While we estimate that the Mauritian population was around 30,000 individuals forty years ago, there were no more than 8000 in 2009, and no reliable data has been published since. Unfortunately, recent projects that attempt to assess how many of them there are on the island are done in collaboration with those who capture them... logical.

We would like massive and urgent funding for research methods without animals in order to facilitate the end of animal testing.

To help to move forward in this way, you can sign our petition asking for the closure of breeding farms and an end to capturing Mauritian macaques destined for laboratories.

Going further, you can consult our report on primates and animal testing and consult the data given year after year and species by species on our dedicated website.

Translated from the French by Joely Justice

Nicolas Marty
Hr blog

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