Ritual slaughter compromise hinges on seconds

Farm minister Hans Bleker has reached an agreement with Jewish and Muslim groups which will allow animals to be killed ritually as long as they ‘lose consciousness’ within 40 seconds of having their throats cut, news agency ANP reports.

The long-awaited agreement will be part of a covenant which will be signed by the minister, interest groups and the slaughterhouse association on Tuesday afternoon.
The covenant will replace draft legislation aimed at banning ritual slaughter outright. That law passed in the lower house of parliament but was voted out by the upper house, or senate.
Jewish and Muslim groups had campaigned heavily against the ban, saying it would compromise freedom of religion and that there is no evidence animals suffer more than in ordinary abattoirs.