The Van Rooi pig slaughterhouse has made plans to change their slaughtering hours to nighttime and early morning, instead of during the day, during periods of extreme heat in the summer so that pigs suffer less from heat stress during transport and unloading at the plant. Van Rooi decided to make this change after the Court supported Van Rooi’s opinion that the NVWA (government inspectors) should also be willing and able to work night shifts during heat waves, in order to reduce animal stress.
After years of us documenting pigs suffering from heat stress during transport to slaughter, Eyes on Animals and the Dierenbescherming have been working hard at getting slaughterhouses to adopt night working hours during heat waves. However the Dutch organization for the meat industry (COV) is reluctant because of the increase in personnel costs, which slaughterhouses will have to cover. Van Rooi acknowledges that they will have more costs but still want to proceed. For them the advantages (amongst them animal welfare) outweigh the costs. We will push for other slaughterhouses to follow their example.