Britain – Clearer labelling of meat should be introduced in Britain to help identify animals killed in accordance with religious slaughter, peers have argued.
During a fierce debate in the House of Lords, shechita was described as “barbaric” and “absolutely unacceptable” before Jewish peers rallied to defend the practice.
The animal welfare and slaughter methods debate, prompted by a question from veterinary professor Lord Trees, concentrated on “ethical, legal and religious factors” relating to pre-slaughter stunning and the labelling of the meat produced.
Animals used for kosher and halal meat are not stunned before slaughter.
Lord De Mauley, the government’s food spokesman in the Lords, said that while the government “would prefer to see all animals stunned before slaughter”, the production of kosher and halal meat would continue to be protected.
Lord Trees quoted a Jewish vet who had written to him claiming she had “never witnessed anything as horrific as shechita slaughter”. The woman said the practice of non-stunning was “barbaric” and had caused her to stop eating kosher meat.
Lord Trees said that while he respected Jewish and Muslim practices, “unnecessary suffering is being caused to a very substantial number of animals by slaughter without stunning.”
Read more at THE JC.