Polish ag minister wont ban shechita

Poland’s minister of agriculture said he will not bow to activists and ban ritual slaughter in the country.

Polish Agricultural Minister Marek Sawicki said May 16 that banning ritual slaughter would be contrary to the Polish Constitution, which guarantees freedom of religion.

Polish animal rights organizations have been protesting shechita, or ritual slaughter, saying animals slaughtered according to Jewish and Islamic law suffer much more than those killed in more traditional ways.

The Polish Ministry of Agriculture authorized the use of ritual slaughter several years ago, but animal rights activists say that a Polish animal protection law does not allow it. Earlier this month activists asked the country’s prosecutor to investigate whether the ministry is violating the law by allowing ritual slaughter.

Polish slaughterhouses produce meat that is sent to Israel and to Muslim countries. — jta