As a member of the Government, I am not able to sign any Early Day Motions, and am therefore unable to sign EDM 153. However, I agree it is so important that we maintain high standards of animal welfare at slaughter.
The Government shares my view on this issue, and have made sure there are strict legal requirements in place. In slaughterhouses, these requirements are monitored and enforced by Official Veterinarians of the Food Standards Agency to ensure that animals are spared unnecessary suffering, distress or pain during the slaughter process.
The committee that advises the Government on animal welfare has reviewed the effectiveness of CCTV in checking the welfare of animals in slaughterhouses and has said it can be beneficial. It recommended that all assurance scheme operators, food retailers and others in the food chain should require that CCTV be installed in slaughterhouses associated with them. The Government will give this report full consideration. As an animal lover I hope they will take the best course of action to ensure the safe welfare of our animals.