Friday 07 October 2022

Dutch implement new restrictions on halal and kosher meat

Photo: Depositphotos.comThe Netherlands is set to sharpen up laws around ritually-slaughtered meat. Martijn van Dam, junior minister for economic affairs, wants stricter rules on meat from animals killed with ‘ritual’ methods instead of being stunned, to reduce suffering.

In a letter to MPs on Wednesday, Van Dam wrote: ‘I find the current implementation unacceptable. Negative effects on animal welfare must be minimised.’

Meat from ritually-killed animals must be clearly labelled, available in religious communities only rather than the ‘regular’ meat chain, and cannot be exported, he wrote. The rules will apply from January next year.

Better monitoring

Van Dam said he had made agreements with Jewish and Muslim organisations and slaughterhouse representatives to implement the new rules.

Abattoirs that want to perform ritual slaughter must register, and will be monitored by Dutch food and goods authority the NVWA.

There will be new eye reflex measures to check animals have lost consciousness before they are killed, and slaughterhouses will need to record numbers.

Thank you for donating to

The team would like to thank all the generous readers who have made a donation in recent weeks. Your financial support has helped us to expand our coverage of the coronavirus crisis into the evenings and weekends and make sure you are kept up to date with the latest developments. has been free for 14 years, but without the financial backing of our readers, we would not be able to provide you with fair and accurate news and features about all things Dutch. Your contributions make this possible.

If you have not yet made a donation, but would like to, you can do so via Ideal, credit card or Paypal.