Stunning Cattle before they are Slaughtered

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I have always assumed that cattle are stunned before they are slaughtered for our food process, but I have recently found out this is not actually always the case.


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Some people say that the animals should not be stunned on religious grounds, but then I found that they are even stunned in some countries that we might expect the stunning not to be done on those religious grounds.

The standard for meat production in Australia is that all animals must be effectively stunned (unconscious) prior to slaughter. Kosher slaughter does not comply with this standard.

Despite the Australian standard requiring stunning, there are instances where the relevant Australian state or territory meat-inspection authority can provide an exemption and approve an abattoir for ritual slaughter without prior stunning – either halal or kosher – for the domestic market.

There are instances where the relevant Australian state or territory meat-inspection authority can approve an abattoir for ritual slaughter without prior stunning – either halal or kosher – for the domestic market. For cattle and sheep, the requirements for this type of slaughter are set out in a nationally adopted guideline Ritual Slaughter for Ovine (Sheep) and Bovine (Cattle):

For cattle, this means the animal must remain in an upright position with the head and body restrained. The animal must be stunned with a captive-bolt pistol immediately after the throat is cut (known as ‘sticking’). Two separate people must perform the sticking and stunning. If there are any problems restraining the animal while attempting to stick it, then it must be stunned immediately.

For religious slaughter of sheep, the guideline requires cutting both the carotid arteries and the jugular veins. This must be confirmed — if they are not completely severed, then the animal must be immediately stunned.
http://kb.rspca.org.au/What-is-kosher-slaughter-in-Australia_117.html
http://kb.rspca.org.au/What-is-halal-slaughter-in-Australia_116.html

I do find religion to be an uncomfortable topic at times, but to find that we ALLOW animals to be killed without stunning first, purely for religious reason, is to me beyond reason.

This country is NOT a Jewish country, nor is it a Muslim country, and we should be permitted to ensure that normal Australian rules are enforced, without regard to religious requirements from other nations. A reminder: “The standard for meat production in Australia is that all animals must be effectively stunned (unconscious) prior to slaughter“.

I am not alone in thinking like this, as even Princess Alia bint al-Hussein of Jordan, the sister of King Abdullah II of Jordan, wants Australia to make the stunning of animals mandatory before they are slaughtered.


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