Funded by the
Better Training for Safer Food Initiative
of the European Union
Funded by the
Better Training for Safer Food Initiative
of the European Union
Better Training for Safer FoodBTSF – Animal Welfare Training Activities 2018/2019
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The first edition of the BTSF course on Animal Welfare at slaughter of cattle, pigs, sheep and goats (advanced level) has been held in Barcelona (Spain) from February 19th to 22nd, 2019.

The course has been organised and coordinated by IZSAM in partnership with the University of Milan, in the framework of the Better Training for Safer Food Initiative of the European Commission’s DG SANTE’s Consumers, Health, Agriculture and Food Executive Agency (CHAFEA, Service Contract no. 20169606).

Twenty-seven participants from European and non-European countries (Belgium, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Montenegro, The Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UK, and Uruguay) have joined the classroom and the practical activities foreseen in the course agenda, including in-field simulating inspections in four selected slaughterhouses located in the surroundings of Barcelona.

The course – introduced by Mrs. Montse Alamos Lopez, from the Department of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Feeding of Barcelona (Catalan Government) – allowed participants to improve their knowledge and practical skills on:

  • how to perform inspections and audits on animal welfare at slaughter;
  • resource and management – based measures;
  • welfare indicators for developing monitoring procedures at slaughterhouses for bovines stunned with penetrative captive bolt or slaughtered without stunning;
  • welfare indicators for developing monitoring procedures at slaughterhouses for pigs stunned with electrical method or carbon dioxide at high concentration;
  • welfare indicators for developing monitoring procedures at slaughterhouses for sheep and goats stunned with electrical method or slaughtered without stunning.

Moreover, participants have gone through interactive discussions and problem solving activities based on real case studies as well as on storytelling of facts and experiences occurred during their professional activities as competent authorities. This has allowed them to deal with the following issues:

  • the impact of farming and transport on the welfare conditions of the animals on arrival at the slaughter plant;
  • proper pre-slaughter handling, stunning, slaughter and killing of animals;
  • animal lairage, housing, handling and assessment of keeping facilities;
  • main stunning and killing techniques at slaughter in Europe.

Ten European experts in the course topics have supported the participants in fulfilling their learning expectations, while constantly exploring the requirements foreseen by the Council Regulation (EC) No. 1099/2009 of 24 September 2009 on the protection of animals at the time of killing.

Interactive discussions and problem solving activities have been furtherly stimulated by adopting the OPERA methodology, which makes participants’ involvement deeper and more participative. The level of new knowledge and understanding acquired by the course beneficiaries has been assessed both at the beginning and at the conclusion of the training activities, showing successful results.

The next BTSF course will be held in Rome, Italy, from March 12th to 15nd, 2019, with a focus on “Animal Welfare during transport” (advanced level course).

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