The Agriculture Ministry announced on Sunday that inspectors had raided a lower
Galilee farm and found that it was conducting illegal poultry slaughter in poor
The raid occurred on Thursday, the ministry said, after
intelligence information revealed that the slaughterhouse was conducting schita
shechura (“black slaughter”) – an illegal slaughter of animals for human
consumption that is conducted without veterinary supervision.
from the ministry’s Central Unit for Enforcement and Investigations, in
conjunction with Veterinary Services, found that the site located in the Nahal
Tzipori area near Nazareth unlawfully possessed its fattened poultry, in
addition to implementing the illegal practice.
At the site, the
Agriculture Ministry inspectors said they discovered two pirate chicken coops
containing about 3,000 birds, which did not meet the requirements of the
ministry’s Veterinary Services and were not being operated with the supervision
of the ministry.
Nearby the coops, the black slaughter process was
occurring in severely poor sanitary conditions, the ministry explained. Because
the black slaughter process occurs without veterinary supervision as required,
it does not involve the proper identification and separation of poultry parts
that are unfit for human consumption and also facilitates contamination of the
meat, the ministry added.
“This is a real danger to public health, and
therefore we urge the public to purchase poultry and eggs at organized and
supervised places only,” said Dr. Shimon Perek, the head veterinarian for
poultry health at Veterinary Services.
In addition to constituting a
public health hazard, the slaughterhouse also posed significant dangers to the
poultry industry, due to the contagious nature of poultry diseases, Perek
“We see it as an obligation to stop the activities on site in
order to maintain the health of the Israeli consumer and to prevent real life
endangerment,” Perek continued.
By Israeli law, all poultry coops must be
registered to and supervised by the Agriculture Ministry, in order to ensure
that all stages of food growth are supervised until reaching the customer, the
ministry explained. In addition, animals for consumption must be transported to
slaughterhouses in an organized and supervised manner.
“The growth of
poultry slaughter in poor sanitary conditions is a real danger to public health,
and the Agriculture Ministry will work to prevent this phenomenon,” said
Agriculture Minister Yair Shamir.
In addition to the problematic
slaughter and poultry possession at the lower Galilee site, the farm was also
selling about 4,500 unmarked eggs, with unknown origins and lacking veterinary
These eggs therefore could have been contaminated with
salmonella and posed a risk to human life, the ministry explained.
initial investigation, the site owner – a Nazareth resident in his 60s –
admitted to raising the poultry without supervision, performing black slaughter
and smuggling eggs from the Palestinian Authority.
Legal proceedings have
begun against him, the ministry added.
“All the birds and eggs at the
place were destroyed,” Perek said.
In response to the raid, the
organization Anonymous for Animal Rights stressed the “shocking” nature of the
conditions at the illegal slaughterhouse.
“The pictures reveal shocking
slaughter in shocking sanitary conditions, but we must remember that also in
organized slaughterhouses conditions are problematic to say the least,” a
statement from the group said. “According to a Veterinary Services report for
2011, 18.2 percent of poultry meat was infected with salmonella, and 95 percent
of the samples were infected with E. coli [bacteria found in feces].”
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