EU seeks tighter slaughterhouse rules

BRUSSELS, Belgium (AP) -- The European Union says it will consider toughening slaughterhouse rules across the continent to reduce the pain of the killings.

The measures will include improving the efficiency of stunning techniques and appointing animal welfare officials in slaughterhouses.

Every year 360 million pigs, sheep, goats and cattle are killed, in addition to several billion poultry. The measures, presented on Thursday, still have to be approved by the 27 EU member states.

An animal welfare advocate, Eurogroup for Animals, has welcomed the initiative.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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