– in the Scottish Parliament on 4th December 2019.
3. To ask the Scottish Government what action it is taking to ensure the welfare of farmed animals. (S5O-03859)
Keepers must meet animals’ welfare needs under the Animal Health and Welfare (Scotland) Act 2006. The Scottish Government introduced the Animals and Wildlife (Penalties, Protections and Powers) (Scotland) Bill to amend the 2006 act by increasing available penalties for cruelty offences and introducing a new procedure to allow animals, including farmed animals, that are taken into possession by enforcement authorities to be sold on or rehomed swiftly without the need for a court order.
We are replacing the codes of practice on the welfare of livestock with guidance that encourages best practice above the minimum legislative requirements, and we are committed to introducing compulsory closed-circuit television into Scottish abattoirs.
The member is, of course, right about our commitment in this year’s programme for government. At present, the welfare of animals at slaughter is ensured by staff from Food Standards Scotland. More than 99 per cent of animals that are slaughtered in Scotland are monitored by some configuration of CCTV coverage.
This year’s programme for government commits the Scottish Government to introducing secondary legislation to make the CCTV recording of slaughter compulsory in Scottish slaughterhouses, and to supporting the industry in introducing CCTV before it becomes compulsory.