Eyes on Animals has filed an enforcement request with the minister of farming, nature, and food safety about the long waiting times at Vion slaughterhouses in Boxtel and Apeldoorn. On the 18th and 19th of July (two extremely warm days) Eyes on Animals again observed long waiting times at the slaughterhouses. Waiting times increased up to 2-2,5 hours. During this time trucks were stationary at Vion’s parking lots or on nearby public roads. Some of the trucks were parked in full sun due to the lack of shade provided by VION. The pigs in the trucks were gasping for breath, foaming at the mouth and had dangerously high breathing rates. A few pigs collapsed on the unloading platform and had to be put out of their suffering on the spot. The parking lots at VION are completely inadequate; they are insufficiently ventilated, with limited cover for all the trucks, there are no cold-water diffusers, and the pigs are not given any water.
These finding are against regulation (EG) Nr. 1099/2009- which states that animals are to be offloaded as soon as possible after arrival, are to be protected against extreme heat and drinking installations must be present.
At Vion, too many pigs are being delivered each hour on a regular basis, even though there is not enough capacity in both the waiting pen and on the unloading platform. If expansion is not an option, Vion should receive less pigs per hour. The parking area outside should not be used as a waiting pen.
Because the long waiting times at Vion have been an issue for years with no improvements planned Eyes on Animals has filed an enforcement request with the minister.