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Kosher ban for Poland?

by: Ben Simons - Last updated: 2012-11-28

Cow

Cow

A court in Poland has ruled that both Jewish and Muslim religious slaughter of animals is illegal despite a EU ruling that allows it.

The Constitutional Tribunal in Warsaw said it was against Polish law to allow ritual slaughter without stunning animals first and that existing laws allowing kosher and halal slaughering are illegal.

The Polish court's decision follows a campaign from local animal rights groups but Poland's Agriculture Minister Stanislaw Kalemba said that EU law would over-rule local law and kosher meat would still be offered.

But despite this, local Jewish groups have raised concerns.

"It appears there is a legal contradiction here and it is too early to tell what this means," said Piotr Kadlcik, president of Poland's Union of Jewish Communities. " "We are seeking legal advice on this right now."

Currently, Poland has 17 licensed slaughterhouses producing meat for Jewish and Muslim communities both inside and outside the country. The value of exports is around 200m euros.