Closed two weeks ago, after the dissemination of shocking images of cruelty to animals, the Izegem abattoir will reopen on Wednesday. The Flemish Minister for Animal Welfare, Ben Weyts (New Flemish Alliance) says that this will happen under strict surveillance.
Owned by the group Verbist, the abattoir had been forced to close after the dissemination, by the group Animal Rights, of images taken without site managers’ knowledge. In particular, it was evident how bulls were hit with cudgels, or ill-treated through the use of electric shock procedures. Some animals had their throats slit without being stunned efficiently, before being hanged by their rear legs, and at the same time being forced to struggle.
Several large customers of the abattoir had immediately announced that they no longer required the abattoir’s services. On Wednesday, the abattoir will reopen following the implementation of a series of measures. A member of staff, who was visible on the images, was dismissed as a result of their distribution.
Slaughters will not now be able to take place without a manager from the Animal Welfare Service present. Moreover, the premises will be equipped with cameras at the most significant parts of the slaughter process.