HSA International Conference programme goes live - Veterinary Practice
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HSA International Conference programme goes live

The Humane Slaughter Association has announced the full programme for their 2022 international conference on livestock welfare during transport, marketing and slaughter, with particular focus on aquatic species

The Humane Slaughter Association (HSA) has announced the full programme for their 2022 international conference: Livestock Welfare during Transport, Marketing and Slaughter. The conference will take place on 30 June and 1 July 2022 at The Royal College of Physicians, Edinburgh, UK. It is the first such event that the HSA has hosted in six years.

The programme boasts six sessions covering the welfare of animals during transport and the pre-slaughter period, the welfare of animals during stunning, slaughter and killing, and novel developments. The conference includes a special focus on the welfare of aquatic species at slaughter, and features talks on the welfare of decapod crustaceans and cephalopod molluscs.

Speaker highlights include:

  • Keynote speaker Bob Elwood (Emeritus Professor, Queen’s University, Belfast) on pain and suffering in decapods
  • Giovanna Ponte (Association for Cephalopod Research (CephRes), Italy) on humane slaughtering of cephalopod molluscs
  • Bjørn Roth (Nofima, Norway) on humane electrical stunning for decapod crustaceans
  • Ben Weis (Tesco PLC, UK) on dry electric stunning as a commercial method for the humane dispatch of White Leg shrimp
  • Jimmy Turnbull (University of Stirling, UK) on in-water electrical stunning for humane slaughter of farmed fin fish
  • Nilantha Jayasuriya (Harper Adams University, UK) on a systematic review and feasibility study of humane stunning or stun/killing of wild-caught fish in commercial fisheries
  • The Humane Slaughter Award 2022 recipient, Mette S Herskin, on the case for the cull sow
  • Keynote speaker Will Jackson (chief strategy officer, AHDB) on animal welfare at slaughter: labelling and the importance of the consumer
  • Keynote speaker Claire White (senior veterinary advisor, National Farmers’ Union (NFU)) on the development and application of the Demonstration of Life protocol

Dr Huw Golledge, HSA’s chief executive and scientific director, said: “With the news that decapod crustaceans and cephalopod molluscs are now recognised as sentient in UK law, it is now more important than ever that we understand how to protect the welfare of these species.

“There is currently a lack of understanding and certainty about the welfare impact and humaneness of basic husbandry and slaughter techniques for these species. By having a special focus on the welfare of aquatic species at slaughter, we hope to provide a platform for animal welfare scientists to present their research findings to the wider community.

“The meeting will be a showcase for the preliminary results from almost £2 million in research funding which the HSA committed to finding humane slaughter techniques for crustaceans, cephalopods and neglected fin-fish species as well as an exciting HSA-funded project to review the extent and future scope for stunning of fish caught in the wild.

“We know from talking to our colleagues and supporters that following two years of restrictions, there is a real appetite for a ‘return to normal’. We are thrilled to be hosting our first face-to-face international conference in six years, giving attendees the opportunity to present their work, network and socialise in person.”

HSA will be following best practice and the latest COVID-19 guidance from the Scottish Government and that of the venue. Those who are unable travel to Edinburgh for the HSA Conference can register to watch the talks online.

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