Slaughter and euthanasia of pigs

big pigThe time may come when you are faced with having to kill a pig, whether slaughtering for food or euthanising an old or sick animal. This article explains what you need to know.

  • Pigs must be slaughtered in licensed premises when their meat is offered for sale to the public.
  • Only licenced home kill butchers can carry out genuine 'home kills' for immedate family and farm staff.
  • Check the regulations with your nearest MAF office.
  • If small pigs are to be euthanised, they should be stunned with a blow to the front of the head with a blunt instrument, and then immediately bled.
  • If a rifle is used on large pigs, the pig should be shot at a point where imaginary lines from each ear to the opposite eyes cross.
  • If a shotgun is used on a large pig, the gun should be held 20cm away from the skin behind one ear and aimed at the eye on the opposite side of the head.
  • Firearms operators require a current licence and must make sure there are no risks to people or other animals.
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