The majority of vets believe consumers need to be better informed about slaughter methods and welfare at slaughter.

97% of vets would choose to buy meat that has been stunned before slaughter, BVA survey shows.

Ahead of today’s (November 4) parliamentary debate on meat slaughter, the British Veterinary Association (BVA) revealed 94% of vets responding to its “Voice of the Veterinary Profession” survey think the public needs better education on the difference between stunned and non-stunned slaughter.

Findings follow the BVA’s high profile #stunb4slaughter campaign, which calls for an end to all non-stun slaughter in the UK.

Although EU and UK law requires all animals to be pre-stunned, non-stun slaughter is permitted for some communities.

The association’s e-petition to end non-stun slaughter makes clear that vets’ concern does not relate to religious belief, but to the animal welfare compromise of non-stun slaughter.

Labelling is one of the issues that will be discussed in today’s parliamentary debate secured by Neil Parish MP, chairman of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Beef and Lamb.

The Westminster Hall debate will not have a vote at the end, but the BVA hopes its e-petition will trigger a full parliamentary debate where a vote will be recorded.  

Speaking ahead of the debate, BVA president John Blackwell said: “Vets’ commitment to the welfare of all animals
throughout their lives, up to and including death, is clearly reflected in the latest findings from the BVA Voice of the Veterinary Profession survey. 97% of vets would choose to buy meat and fish that has been stunned before slaughter to render the animal insensible to pain.  

“But there is much more to be done to educate the general public about welfare at slaughter. We know UK consumers care about animal welfare, but our members believe there needs to be better understanding about methods of slaughter and how that impacts on welfare.

“We believe labelling that clearly explains the method of slaughter would help all consumers make informed choices about the products they wish to buy.  

“We are working hard to ensure our e-petition reaches 100,000 signatures to show the strength of feeling on this important welfare issue that affects millions of animals every year.”

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