Meat: Ritual Slaughter

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered on 11th December 2018.

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Photo of Danielle Rowley Danielle Rowley Labour, Midlothian

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps his Department is taking to respond to representations for greater clarity from consumers of meat products on whether the animals involved have been stunned.

Photo of Danielle Rowley Danielle Rowley Labour, Midlothian

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether he plans to bring forward legislative proposals requiring meat products to include labels denoting whether the animal had been stunned; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of David Rutley David Rutley Assistant Whip (HM Treasury), Government Whip

The Government would prefer all animals to be stunned before slaughter but respects the right of the Jewish and Muslim communities to eat meat prepared in accordance with their religious beliefs. The Government is aware that there is public interest about meat from animals slaughtered in accordance with religious beliefs being sold to consumers who do not require their meat to be prepared in this way. Where meat is labelled as halal or kosher this must be accurate and must not be misleading to the consumer.

The Government believes that consumers should have the necessary information available to them to make an informed choice about their food and this is an issue that we are considering in the context of our departure from the EU.

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