Animal welfare organisation Crustacean Compassion is launching the UK’s first industry benchmark on decapod crustacean welfare.
‘The Snapshot’ looks to assess 30 leading seafood producers, processors, retailers, and wholesalers on their management practices and reporting of welfare standards for decapod crustaceans, such as crabs, lobsters, prawns and nephrops (langoustines).
Commissioned by Crustacean Compassion and facilitated by Chronos Sustainability, the assessment criteria used has been informed by input from the industry, other stakeholders and a public consultation period.
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The summary findings which will establish a baseline of current practices for progress to be measured, are set to be shared via a live, virtual launch event at 11am on 25 January 2023.
This comes as research has found that decapod crustaceans are sentient animals capable of feeling pain, however the organisation has said there is currently little to no legal protection from inhumane practices or guidance on humane capture, handling, storage, transport or slaughter available.
In looking to create greater tansparency in food systems, The Snapshot will also aid companies to address the welfare issue and demonstrate how they are doing so to the industry and consumers.
“The launch of The Snapshot is a positive step on the path towards higher welfare standards for decapod crustaceans, a direction that is already being pursued by legislation along with many companies and organisations within the seafood industry,” Crustacean Compassion director of development, Claire Howard said.
“We appreciate the input received from industry during the development of the benchmark, which aims to help provide the transparency both consumers and businesses need to make informed choices.
“The UK seafood industry can lead the way on decapod crustacean welfare, resulting in benefits for companies, consumers, and decapods alike.”