Vets hail law making CCTVs in Scottish abattoirs mandatory

UK vets say the new legislation is a 'huge win' for animal welfare, food safety and public health
UK vets say the new legislation is a 'huge win' for animal welfare, food safety and public health

CCTVs will be made compulsory in abattoirs in Scotland following a long and sustained campaign by the veterinary profession.

The new legislation will require all abattoirs in Scotland to install and operate CCTVs and to retain footage and associated data for a period of 90 days.

The legislation, which follows approval by the Scottish parliament earlier this month, will come into force next summer.

It follows a public consultation by the Scottish government in 2018 in which a vast majority of respondents backed the new measures.

The British Veterinary Association (BVA) responded in support of the mandatory use of CCTVs where they were complementary to the physical monitoring and checks undertaken by Official Vets.

BVA Scottish Branch President Kathleen Robertson said the decision was a 'huge win' not only for animal health and welfare but for public health, food safety and trade.

"While most Scottish abattoirs already have CCTV, this legislation will help to keep welfare standards high at all stages of the supply chain now and in the future," he added.

"It is positive that Official Vets in abattoirs will be able to use CCTV footage as a complement to their welfare monitoring and also have unrestricted access to footage so that they can identify and resolve any breaches in regulation effectively.

“Now that Scotland has taken this important step, we hope that governments in Wales and Northern Ireland will follow with similar legislation to underpin the high welfare standards across the whole of the UK.”

The Mandatory Use of Closed Circuit Television in Slaughterhouses (Scotland) Regulations 2020 will come into force from 1 July 2021.