Are religious/ritual methods of slaughter more humane?

Is religious or ritual slaughter such as halal or kosher more humane than modern Western methods of slaughter? These two articles explore this topic and make some compelling arguments. If you are vegetarian or vegan these arguments may be moot but for those of who do eat meat but are also concerned about animal welfare, this is an interesting subject for consideration. Let us know what you think.

Religious slaughter and animal welfare: a discussion for meat scientists

Both the Muslim and Jewish faiths have specific requirements for the slaughter of religiously acceptable animals. The major difference from the general practices in most countries is that the animals are not stunned prior to slaughter. It is important that meat scientists understand the implications of these differences. They need to critically consider the scientific information available about the effects of different slaughter practices on animals before reaching any judgements about the appropriateness of a particular form of slaughter. It is also important that they understand the importance of these practices to the people who follow these religious codes. We hope to discuss some information that may be useful in evaluating religious slaughter.

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Halal: The most humane slaughter

It is claimed that the slaughtering of an animal with a knife is the most painful and tortuous method of killing. Nothing can be farther from the truth. It has been established beyond any shadow of doubt, through impartial scientific experiments conducted in non-Muslim countries, that the Islamic method of slaughtering with a knife is the least painful and thus the most humane method of killing an animal.

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