HSA publishes new stunning technical note

The Humane Slaughter Association (HSA) has published a new technical note on the use and monitoring of carbon dioxide systems which are increasingly used in slaughter of pigs.

The Humane Slaughter Association (HSA) has published a new technical note on the use and monitoring of carbon dioxide systems which are increasingly used in larger slaughter operations in the UK for the stunning and killing of pigs.

Although exposure to high concentrations of carbon dioxide is aversive and may compromise welfare, carbon dioxide systems can be the most reliable method for ensuring consistency of welfare (and quality) in high throughput systems: eliminating potential human error (eg stun inaccuracy) and allowing the group movement of animals, said the HSA.

Whilst a non-aversive gas mixture would be preferable, no such alternative is currently commercially available. For carbon dioxide systems to be as humane as possible, it is essential that animals are exposed to the maximum concentration of gas as soon as possible, and that the dwell time is sufficient to ensure that animals do not regain consciousness.

The technical note can be obtained from the HSA. Call 01582 831919 or email info@hsa.org.uk

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