IMPORTANT LEGAL NOTICE : The information on this site is subject to a legal notice (
Background of the regulation

The adoption of the regulation was based on Commission proposal BG CS DA DE EL ES ET FI FR HU IT LT LV MT NL PL PT RO SK SL SV pdf (COM(2008)553final) that the Commission presented in 2008.

The proposal was accompanied by an impact assessment in order to evaluate the possible social, economic and environmental implications of different options.

Impact assessment report pdf

Summary of the Impact Assessment Report DE FR pdf

Scientific and international background

The previous EU legislation (Directive 93/119/EC) needed to be revised, however, as scientific and technical knowledge in this field had progressed. In 2004 and 2006 the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) adopted two opinions on stunning and killing methods:

In parallel, the Union had been working to make EU animal welfare policy more widely accepted at international level. This led to the adoption of several welfare guidelines by the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) in 2005. In particular the OIE adopted guidelines on stunning and killing for human consumption as well as on killing for disease-control purposes.

Economic study

The Commission launched in 2006 a study into stunning/killing practices in slaughterhouses and their economic, social and environmental consequences. The study was carried out by an external consultant, the Food Chain Evaluation Consortium.

The study on stunning/killing practices in slaughterhouses and their economic, social and environmental consequences was conducted by Civic Consulting (Germany) and Agra CEAS Consulting (Belgium). Civic Consulting was leading the study and was focusing primarily on the red meat sector; Agra CEAS was focusing primarily on the poultry sector.

Terms of reference for the study pdf
Report part I pdf
Report part II pdf

Stakeholders’ opinion


Compassion in World Farming

Federation of Veterinarians of Europe

Submission by Animals’ Angels

French Food Safety Agency (AFSSA)

International butchers' confederation (CIBC)

Views of the Humane Slaughter Associationpdf

European Fur Breeders’ Association (EFBA)pdf

Respect for Animals and Humane Society International (UK)pdf Annexpdf

Eurogroup for Animals