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Hannah Leese, Partner
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Animal welfare is an emotive topic. Proponents of animal welfare advocate that the rules can never be strict enough whereas there are many who believe that the complicated rules applicable to slaughterhouses go too far.
The Mandatory Use of CCTV in Slaughterhouses (England) Regulations 2018, which requires all slaughterhouses to have CCTV in all areas of their plant where live animals are present, is an example of the draconian nature of the law in this area.
The slaughterhouse operator is responsible for ensuring compliance with both the European and domestic regulations on the welfare of animals at the time of killing. These rules require, amongst other things, that all slaughtermen and operatives who handle live animals are competent/suitably qualified and that the slaughterhouse is properly maintained and equipped to deal with animals humanely.
Our Specialist team at Roythornes has experience in dealing with animal welfare infringements that can arise during slaughter. We challenge the service of Welfare Enforcement Notices to the First Tier Tribunal as well as taking steps to appeal decisions by the Food Standards Agency to suspend or revoke an operative’s CoCs. In addition, we regularly assist clients at PACE interview and defend prosecutions in the criminal courts.