France may be home to such "delicacies" as foie gras and escargots (snails) but a recent decision by the French National Assembly seems to indicate the nation’s will to move towards a more progressive stance regarding animal welfare.
The French Parliament voted in favor of making cameras mandatory in all of its country’s slaughterhouses starting January 2018. The installation of cameras will begin this year however as a test phase.
The adoption of this new law by the French Assembly follows a request by the deputies to investigate animal treatment in French slaughterhouses. This was put in motion after scandalous undercover footage depicting acts of animal cruelty was taken in one of the nation’s slaughterhouses deemed to be the most “animal-friendly”. The footage, filmed by L214, an Animal Rights Organization shocked the French public.
The plan to have cameras installed at all stages of animals handling, from arrival to slaughter, is being decried by some as a lack of respect for workers. There is also some concern about low scale slaughterhouses shutting down due to the new constraints.
Although dissident voices are present, animal rights organizations and the public had more influence in the end. A recent poll showed that 85% of respondents declared themselves in favor of cameras being used to monitor animal welfare in slaughterhouses.
The subsequent footage obtained following the application of the law in 2018 will be going directly to designated animal welfare specialists working on premises. Slaughterhouses’ owners will not be allowed to get their hands on the tapes.
While this decision by the French Parliament is a step in the right direction, animal rights groups remind the public that eating less or no animals is still the best way to counter animal cruelty.
What do you think of France’s decision to monitor slaughterhouses using cameras?
Do you wish your country would pass a similar law?
Let me know in the comments.