SPCA New Zealand
Advice & welfare

Eels

Animals in the Wild

SPCA advocates for the humane slaughter of eels.

The practice of processing live (unstunned) eels is a serious welfare concern. Electrical stunning immediately followed by a killing method is the current preferred method of slaughter. SPCA opposes the following inhumane methods of slaughter: salt bath, desliming and evisceration; ammonia, washing and evisceration; and immobilization by exposure to ice (and salt), washing and evisceration.

As it is very difficult to restrain live eels effectively, manual concussion and brain spiking are not appropriate methods for killing eels.

SPCA advocates that all eels must be unconscious for the duration of desliming or killed before they are deslimed.

The process of desliming can cause severe and often prolonged distress and is a significant welfare concern.

Eels slaughtered for the commercial purposes are legally required to be stunned prior to desliming.

SPCA is opposed to the export of live eels. SPCA advocates that long-duration transportation should be legally restricted to meat or carcasses only.

(see Live Export for more information)

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