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After a year of waiting, the petitioner politely asks for the second time



After a year of waiting, the petitioner politely asks for the second time

If you can always ask, you can always ask again. And asking again is the tactic the Animal Welfare Institute is using with the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS).

In May 2023, the Animal Welfare Institute, Compassion in World Farming, the Humane Society of the United States, Humane Society Legislative Fund, Humane Society Veterinary Medical Association, and World Animal Protection filed a petition requesting that FSIS establish rules to ban pigs to require slaughter establishments using carbon dioxide stunning to install video cameras in their stunning areas.

The petition was assigned to the FSIS Office of Policy and Program Development for review. It was assigned petition number 23-05. It also received some messages of support, but only silence from FSIS.

So after an entire year had passed, the Animal Welfare Institute decided to try again to convince FSIS of a favorable outcome.

“Please consider the petition (#23-05) filed over a year ago on May 16, 2023 by the Animal Welfare Institute and other animal welfare organizations. It asks FSIS to require pig slaughterhouses to install cameras in the gondolas used to stun people. or killing more than 100 million pigs every year with carbon dioxide (CO2).”

The May 31, 2024 request from the Animal Welfare Institute continues with the following points:

— This would be an essential but relatively small step for slaughterhouses, especially those that already use video surveillance equipment in other parts of their facilities.

— The absence of cameras in CO2 nacelles violates federal law. The Federal Meat Inspection Act and the Humane Methods of Slaughter Act require FSIS inspectors to observe all slaughter methods to determine whether they are conducted humanely.

– Without the ability to observe pigs while they are gassed with CO2, inspectors cannot assess whether and to what extent the method is “fast and effective” as required by law.

– In early 2023, activists released undercover images from a camera hidden in a beautiful CO2 gondola in an American pig factory. The video showed groups of pigs in the cage screaming violently and struggling with each other for almost a minute before eventually losing consciousness.

– Since then, undercover videos shot in the UK and Australia have similarly shown pigs in pain while anesthetized by CO2. Even the Meat Institute’s recently updated animal handling guidelines acknowledge that “there are inconsistent results on how pigs respond to the induction of CO2 anesthesia,” underscoring the importance of allowing inspectors to monitor pigs during to observe the slaughter.

In its new letter, it urges FSIS to grant the petition and establish rules to require hog slaughter facilities to install cameras in their CO2 stunning rooms so that the entire interior of the gondola and the animals held therein remain visible at all for FSIS inspectors. times during slaughter.

Others who have responded to the petition in the past year include the Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF), Vegan Finance LLC and Animal Partisan.

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