The Finnish Government proposes amendments to the Animal Welfare Act (247/1996) regarding slaughter and related procedures according to the government bill (35/2013), these amendments aim to bring the national legislation in accordance with the EC Regulation (1099/2009) on the protection of animals at the time of killing.
At present, the matters in question are regulated in a decree level. Transferring the provisions to an act is necessary for constitutional reasons. The amendments set forth that slaughtering shall be done as quickly and painlessly as possible, by a person with adequate knowledge and skill to carry out the act. Moreover, the death of the animal shall always be confirmed before taking any further actions.
The supervisory authorities and organizing of supervisory shall remain the same. The supervision of slaughter shall be made more effective by a notification procedure. All operators in the industry, including such animal owners or keepers who regularly slaughter large amounts of animals at once, shall be obliged to submit a notification to the Regional State Administrative Agency prior to commencing such operations. Further, the use of administrative coercive measures shall be amended so that a supervisory authority may give an order or a ban to anyone offending the Animal Welfare Act; instead of only the animal owner or keeper, as presently.
The amendments are proposed to enter into force on 1 July 2013. Also a comprehensive reformation of the Animal Welfare Act is currently pending.