Mandatory CCTV is a ‘big step forward’ for animal welfare -BVA

Mandatory CCTV is a 'big step forward' for animal welfare -BVA

The British Veterinary Association (BVA) has praised new laws making the use of Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) in slaughterhouses in Wales to become mandatory this year.

The BVA stated that this is a “big step forward for animal welfare, but also for the confidence of consumers who buy animal products”.

BVA senior vice president, Malcolm Morley said:

“We have long lobbied for and strongly support these new regulations. CCTV is a useful tool in helping to ensure that legal requirements are met and high animal welfare standards are maintained.

“However, it is really important to ensure that, CCTV footage checks must not reduce or replace the physical monitoring and verification of animal welfare and hygiene requirements that are currently undertaken,” Morley said.

Mandatory CCTV

The mandatory use of Closed Circuit Television in Slaughterhouses (Wales) Regulations 2024 will require CCTV cameras to be installed in all slaughterhouses in areas where live animals are unloaded, kept, handled, stunned, and killed.

The Senedd approved the regulations on Tuesday, May 22 which are now included in the Animal Welfare Plan for Wales, which seeks to maintain and improve standards of welfare for all kept animals.

Requirements to install and operate a CCTV system and keep CCTV footage and information will come into force on Saturday, June 1.

The Welsh government said CCTV “does not replace direct oversight by slaughterhouse management or official veterinarians”, but that “it can help improve the efficiency of monitoring and enforcement activity”.

CCTV in slaughterhouses has been mandatory in England since 2018 and mandatory in Scotland since 2021.

Ban on live exports

Meanwhile, a new ban on exporting live animals from Great Britain has come into law on Monday, May 20 as the Animal Welfare (Livestock Exports) Act received Royal Assent.

The legislation bans the export of live animals including cattle, sheep, and pigs for slaughter and fattening from Great Britain.

The Animal Welfare (Livestock Exports) Act will also ensure that animals are slaughtered domestically in high welfare UK slaughterhouses, the UK government said.

Live exports in other specific circumstances, for example, for breeding and competitions, will still be allowed provided animals are transported in line with legal requirements which protect their welfare, the government said.

Mandatory CCTV is a ‘big step forward’ for animal welfare -BVA

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