EU votes for non-stunned meat labelling

All poultry meat may eventually carry a label displaying the method of slaughter as well as the country of origin after draft legislation was passed in the EU parliament.

The labelling would differentiate meat prepared using stunned and non-stunned animals, which at the moment can enter the market without consumers being aware of the different practices.

The British Veterinary Association (BVA) supported the proposed labelling change and reiterated its call for all animals to be stunned before slaughter.

“We have argued for some time for meat from animals slaughtered without the more humane method of stunning to be labelled as such,” president of the BVA, Prof Bill Reilly said.

“The more consumers understand these issues, the more consumer power can make a difference.”

In some religious practices such as Jewish (Shechita) and Muslim (Halal) slaughter, animals must be killed without stunning.

The draft legislation still faces an uphill battle, despite 559 MEPs to 54 voting in favour, with EU agriculture ministers still due to debate the issue later this year.

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