07/12/07 Croatia Violates Provisions Concerning the Protection of Animals During Slaughter
Animal Friends announces findings of the European Commission
- European Commission confirmed illegal practice in Croatian slaughterhouses
Animal Friends received a European Commission report, whose objective was to evaluate control systems which have been put in place to ensure that meat exported to the EU is obtained from animals which have been slaughtered under conditions which offer guarantees of humane treatment at least equivalent to those provided in Council Directive 93/119/EC. The mission was carried out from December 4 to 8, 2006.
However, the report acknowledged big shortcomings in slaughterhouses in which animals have been brutally slaughtered, and not receiving the minimum of protection during slaughter – adequate stunning.
Some of the following shortcomings were noted:
- The Central Competent Authority (the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management of Croatia, Veterinary Administration) had not determined the strength and duration of the current for stunning in the water bath stunner, which is contrary to the Directive;
- Most of the turkeys received pre-stun shocks as their wings went into contact with the water before their heads were immersed, as a result of improper adjustment of the water bath;
- Wing flapping in turkeys started circa 30 sec after stunning and lasted for circa one minute, which indicates inadequate stunning. The current used for the water bath was five times lower than that recommended in a report from the European Food Safety Agency (EFSA) on stunning and killing methods.
From all above-mentioned it is evident that the lack of training and guidance from the Ministry on animal welfare at slaughter has contributed to inadequate controls in slaughterhouses.
We ask ourselves whether the Ministry, since those findings, gave instructions about the protection of animals during slaughter and whether the issue of lack of training for the authorized veterinarians working in slaughterhouses has been resolved.
It is clear that there is no humane slaughter, and this is one of the reasons why Animal Friends promote vegetarianism as the only way to protect animals, at the same time stressing out the necessity of enforcing provisions about the treatment of animals during slaughter in order to alleviate the suffering of animals used for consumption.
Animal Friends wants to introduce this report to the Croatian public, while it sent a letter to minister Cobankovic asking him about the next steps to be taken so as to correct this neglicence as soon as possible.