authorities and Victoria’s meat industry regulator have given
reassurances that shechita (kosher slaughter) is carried out in full
accordance with government regulations.
[kosher] slaughter conforms 100 per cent with Australian standards,”
Rabbi Mordechai Gutnick, Kosher Australia’s rabbinic administrator,
said this week.
statement followed an announcement by Federal Agricultural Minister
Peter McGauran of an immediate investigation into ritual slaughter in
Australia, after animal-welfare groups received complaints about alleged
practices at a Victorian export abattoir, Midfield Meats, which has
an exemption to slaughter meat without stunning.
to Rabbi Gutnick, no kosher slaughtering is or ever has been conducted
at Midfield Meats.
abattoirs where kosher meat is processed are all under the control of
state or federal inspectors that continually ensure adherence to the
official protocols applicable to each abattoir ... We have always operated
kosher slaughtering in accordance with the applicable government protocols
and regulations. There has never been any suggestion that applicable
laws and standards are not being followed.”
the Victorian meat industry regulatory body, confirmed this week that
three Victorian abattoirs are licensed to conduct ritual slaughter.
Two of them, Hardwick’s in Kyneton and GA Gathercole in Carrum,
supply the domestic kosher market.
executive Brian Casey said most abattoirs under PrimeSafe’s supervision,
including those conducting ritual slaughter, are audited four times
aspects of [abattoir] operation are subject to the PrimeSafe system
of regulatory management,” he told the AJN.
said the same industry standards have been in place since 2001.
Australian standard requires stunning if the slitting of the throat
does not render the animal unconscious.”
Council of Victoria president Rabbi Meir Shlomo Kluwgant, who has worked
as a shochet for nearly 20 years, said he had witnessed regular audits
shechita has to be humane,” Rabbi Kluwgant said. “The halacha
clearly requires that the laws of the land be respected and obeyed ...
It is true to say that we will not accept anything that is pre-stunned,
but it is not true to say that we act outside the boundaries of Australian
law and standards.”
Rabbi Kluwgant rejected claims in an article in The Age last Saturday
that cattle are ritually slaughtered at two Victorian abattoirs without
stunning. He said all kosher beef is stunned after the shechita is carried
meat is currently exported from Australia to Hong Kong, Singapore, Fiji,
New Zealand and Thailand.
number of export markets, including Israel and Malaysia, will not accept
kosher or halal meat that has been stunned. Currently, Australia does
not export kosher meat to Israel.
said in a statement that the review would examine “the science
concerning the welfare aspects of livestock slaughter without stunning”,
to determine whether changes ought to be made to the Australian industry
to Jewish law, animals must be slaughtered by a single cut to the throat.
Stunning before the slaughter compromises this halachic requirement
because it is more difficult to ascertain whether the stunning or the
slaughter was the cause of death.
(Australian Jewish news)