Via the Guardian:
About 10 million turkeys are expected to be eaten in the UK over Christmas with most people unaware of how the bird on their plate was killed. All that could change under proposed EU legislation that would require the labelling of unstunned halal and kosher meat, to the chagrin of Muslim and Jewish groups.
Emotions among Jews and Muslims have been inflamed by far-right groups such as the British National Party and English Defence League whipping up opposition to halal meat – the former describes it as a "barbaric and disgusting Islamic tradition" – while not targeting kosher meat.
The Conservative MEP for North West England, Sajjad Karim, who is a Muslim, received threatening emails after voting against the amendment.
Yunus Dudhwala, chairman of the Halal Monitoring Committee (HMC),, which certifies halal products in the UK, said animal welfare was a "red herring", adding that there was a relative lack of interest in factory farming and animal transportation conditions.
"If people are really concerned about animal welfare the rest of the journey of the animal [before slaughter] really needs to be looked at," he said.
Dudhwala said he would be happy for unstunned meat to be labelled if other meat carried the method of stunning used, such as gassing or electrocution, but believed that would never happen because it would be unpalatable for consumers.
The other UK halal regulator, the Halal Food Authority (HFA), which approves of stunning before slaughter providing it does not kill the animal (the HMC argues it is impossible to guarantee this), supports labelling of unstunned meat.