Undercover Investigation: "Shackle and Hoist" Slaughter in South America
Footage exposes extraordinarily cruel practices of the beef industry
The investigation exposes workers using an extraordinarily cruel slaughter method known as “shackle and hoist”, a method which was phased out in Israel and other countries, and breaches OIE regulations.
Workers electrically prod, chain, and painfully restrain each cow by hooking one nostril with a metal hand-held hook and a pronged restraint tool known as the "devil’s fork". After a cow's throat is slit, she is immediately hoisted up a rail, while writhing in pain.
Temple Grandin, PhD, a world-renowned expert on animal welfare, watched the footage. According to Dr. Grandin's statement, there are several indications that the animals were still conscious after the slaughter, while being hoisted to the rail.
The documentation shows workers using a puntilla to sever the spinal cord. Per Dr. Grandin's statement, "This does NOT make the animal unconscious. The head can remain conscious after the spine is severed.”
Fighting for Change
Most of the investigation footage was shot in Frigochaco, a Paraguay slaughterhouse which markets its products to Israeli importer "Neto". Over 80 animals are slaughtered each hour in Frigochaco, using the "shackle and hoist" kosher method.
Overall, approximately 200 thousand animals were slaughtered there last year alone (including kosher and non-kosher slaughter). The Israeli Ministry of Agriculture's veterinary services approve and supervise slaughterhouses who export meat to Israel, being fully aware of what goes on inside their walls.
In February 2015, Dr. Muhammed Abed El-Hallak, who served as chief doctor for slaughterhouses in Israel, sent a letter to the chairman of veterinary services, warning about the use of forbidden methods. However, nothing has changed.
Previous investigations carried out by PETA in kosher slaughterhouses in South America led to harsh criticism of the "shackle and hoist" method, both in Israel and in the American Jewish community.
In 2008 and 2010, the Rabbinate declared that they would instruct importers to cease utilization of this method, and former chief rabbi Yona Metzger even threatened to revoke kosher certification for slaughterhouses who would not comply.
"The investigation shows that the animals go through a chain of continuous torture", said a joint statement by PETA US and Anonymous for Animal Rights. "It is outrageous that shackling and hoisting is still taking place: it is time for the Rabbinate to enforce its instructions, and for the Ministry of Agriculture to prohibit this unnecessary abuse. However, let us not delude ourselves: every slaughter involves cruelty, pain and suffering. The real power to stop this is in our hands, the consumers – and today it's easier than ever to avoid funding animal abuse by going vegan".
What Can Be Done?
- Send a letter to Israel's chief rabbis and minister of agriculture, requesting that they ban shackle and hoist slaughter.
- The best way to help animals is to boycott abusive industries. These days, it's easier than ever before: come and experience 22 days of veganism, accompanied by clinical dietitians and experienced vegan mentors, all free!
- Your donations make our investigations possible. Donate now to Anonymous' investigation team.
We would like to thank our colleagues at Let the Animals Live for their contribution to this investigation.