You are here

The Week

  • Author(s):


    Some animals killed for halal meat in the UK are stunned electrically before their throats are slit, known as "pre-stunned slaughter". The  approves of low-voltage electrified water baths to stun poultry and electric tong stunning for sheep and goats. However, it is forbidden to use methods of stunning that can actually kill the animal, such as bolt guns. Animals not killed by ritual slaughter are considered carrion meat, which is haram.


    Animal health experts and campaigners disagree. The RSPCA argues that killing animals without stunning them causes "unnecessary suffering", while activist group  calls halal slaughter "prolonged torment", saying the animals "fight and gasp for their last breath, struggling to stand while the blood drains from their necks".

    The British Veterinary Association calls for all animals to be effectively stunned before slaughter, while the  says cutting an animal's throat is "such a massive injury [that it] would result in very significant pain and distress in the period before insensibility supervenes".

Subscribe to The Week