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Hazard identification for pigs at slaughter and during on‐farm killing


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The AHAW Network includes nationally appointed EU Member State organisations representatives with expertise in the fields of animal health and animal welfare. At the AHAW Network meeting held in July 2019, two exercises were held aimed at i) the identification of hazards for pigs at slaughter and ii) the identification of hazards during on‐farm killing of pigs. Animals may need to be dispatched on‐farm for multiple reasons such as culling of individual injured and sick animals, other reasons associated to stock management, or emergency on‐farm killing for disease control. The methods used to cull small numbers of animals on farm are diverse and they may differ from those applied for routine slaughter. For both exercises, for each phase of the killing process, a list of all indicated hazards was produced and discussion was held in order to agree on a common terminology. The Network members indicated the three most relevant welfare hazards that were present in their countries. The resulting lists give indication of the hazards that are most common in European Member States and most urgent to be addressed in order to safeguard animal welfare during pig slaughter and on‐farm killing.