Research by the British Veterinary Association (BVA) the Food Standards Agency (FSA) tells us that Halal and kosher abattoirs cut the throats of 2.4 million sheep and goats without stunning in the latest recorded year. This, says UKIP, is an increase of 60 per cent compared to previous years and called the trend 'unacceptable'. UKIP has also declared that it supports the BVA and RSPCA call for a ban on non-stun slaughter.
A UKIP spokesman said, "Animal and veterinary science has long concluded that cutting the throats of animals whilst they are fully conscious can cause significant distress and pain.
"Pre-stunning before religious ritual slaughter is fully compatible with all world religions. Therefore, we see no reason why religious groups should not take into account the concerns of animal welfare when carrying out slaughter.
"We find the government response to this issue is weak, lazy and bordering on spineless. It says it would "prefer" animals to be stunned before slaughter but that it must "respect the rights of Jewish and Muslim communities to eat meat in accordance with their beliefs.
"We respect religious groups to carry out slaughter in the UK according to how they define and read their scriptures. What we do not allow however is for the rights and demands of groups within those religion override the UK's compassionate traditions of animal welfare.
"There is a significant number of UK consumers that would prefer not to eat meat killed by religious slaughter. So, UKIP will also write into law that all animal meat produce will have mandatory labelling – providing clearly both the method of production and slaughter – giving people greater transparency and choice.
"UKIP's forthcoming manifesto on animal welfare will be the strongest of any major political party in the UK."