asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food whether, since the lifting of the ban on the export of live food animals, he has had representations concerning the conditions under which such animals are slaughtered at certain abattoirs in France, particulars of which have been sent to him; whether steps have been taken to investigate such representations; and whether he is now satisfied generally that all exported live food animals are transported and slaughtered in humane fashion.
I have received many representations based on secondhand and generalised reports and allegations of ill-treatment of animals in foreign abattoirs. The allegations are mainly repetitions of those fully investigated by the O'Brien Committee and found to be not entirely accurate. Only one report, received on 11th June, concerns the period since United Kingdom exports were resumed and I am having it examined. In general I am satisfied that exported food animals are now transported and slaughtered humanely.