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Livestock Stakeholder Willingness to Embrace Preslaughter Stunning in Key Asian Countries

1
Centre for Animal Welfare and Ethics, School of Veterinary Sciences, The University of Queensland, Gatton, QLD 4343, Australia
2
Institute of Tropical Agriculture and Food Security, Universiti Putra Malaysia, 43400 UPM Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia
3
Environmental Futures Research Institute, School of Environment and Science, Griffith University, Brisbane, Nathan, QLD 4111, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Animals 2019, 9(5), 224; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani9050224
Received: 7 April 2019 / Revised: 22 April 2019 / Accepted: 28 April 2019 / Published: 8 May 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Welfare)
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PDF [239 KB, uploaded 8 May 2019]

Simple Summary

Preslaughter stunning is a technical process by which animals are rendered unconscious prior to slaughter, as to avoid the pain and fear of being slaughtered. While it is a legislative requirement in some countries, it is not yet regularly practised in many countries. To better understand why this might be the case, this study conducted focus group sessions with leaders from the livestock industries in China, Vietnam, India, Thailand, Malaysia and Bangladesh. Leaders were asked to rate the willingness of livestock stakeholders to adopt preslaughter stunning, in addition to their suggested solutions for increasing the level of willingness, and their thoughts as to why they were or were not willing to adopt stunning. This data was analysed and presented within this manuscript. The findings were specific to each country, with similar themes shared across some of the countries. The findings of this study may aid in the development of programs that aim to increase the adoption of preslaughter stunning practices, with the purpose of improving animal welfare during slaughter.

Abstract

Preslaughter stunning; the induction of unconsciousness and insensibility of animals prior to slaughter, is an important process for the welfare of livestock. The application of stunning is required by legislation in some countries, and rarely practised in others. In order to effectively advocate the implementation of stunning in the regions that do not include the practice as standard, it is first important to understand attitudes towards stunning, barriers to implementing stunning, and stakeholder willingness to embrace the practice. To this purpose, 17 focus group sessions were held with leaders in livestock production in China, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, India and Bangladesh. Leaders were asked to rate their perceived willingness of livestock stakeholders to embrace stunning, and their rationales were discussed. In addition to this, the leaders were asked to present ideas to improve the willingness of stakeholders to embrace stunning. The data were qualitatively analysed used thematic analysis, quantified, and presented within this manuscript. Importantly, different attitudes and solutions existed by country, mostly in line with the predominating religion within the country, and the stage of economic development. Concerns around nonstatic and constantly evolving animal welfare benchmarks were also presented as important factors impacting the adoption of stunning, and the technical methods used. The findings of this study may aid in the development of programs that aim to increase the adoption of preslaughter stunning practices, to the purpose of improving animal welfare during slaughter. View Full-Text
Keywords: animal welfare; China; stunning; slaughter; livestock; Asia animal welfare; China; stunning; slaughter; livestock; Asia
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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MDPI and ACS Style

Sinclair, M.; Idrus, Z.; Burns, G.L.; Phillips, C.J.C. Livestock Stakeholder Willingness to Embrace Preslaughter Stunning in Key Asian Countries. Animals 2019, 9, 224.

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