Dutch consider banning ritual slaughter without anaesthetics

08-04-2011 | | |
Dutch consider banning ritual slaughter without anaesthetics

For reasons of animal welfare, parliament in the Netherlands is considering a ban on ritual slaughter without the prior use of anaesthetics.

Although still early days, a bill in Dutch Parliament put up by the Animal Party, banning ritual slaughter is likely to get a majority when being put up for a vote.

Anaesthesising prior to slaughter is mandatory in the Netherlands. An exception, however, is made for halal (Muslim) and kosher (Jewish) slaughtering, as in these cases the animals for religious reasons may not be anaesthesised prior to slaughter.

This would involve poultry, sheep, goat and beef slaughterings as pork is not considered halal or kosher.

Some scientists and veterinarians claim that animals slaughtered without prior anaesthetisising will suffer from additional stress and pain.

In case the practice will be banned, it is expected that this specialised slaughtering business may have to be relocated to neighbouring countries.

In a reaction, the Dutch liberal party (VVD) pointed out that a bill like this is a too strong infliction on liberty of religion. It is unclear when there will be a vote on the matter.