Introduction of compulsory closed-circuit TV recording at abattoirs: consultation

Public consultation from 28 March to 20 June 2018 seeking views on the introduction of compulsory CCTV in all areas of slaughterhouses where live animals are present.

Part 1 – About This Consultation

Topic of this consultation

This consultation is seeking views on the introduction of compulsory closed circuit TV recording of slaughter at abattoirs in Scotland.

'Slaughter at abattoirs' is defined for the purposes of this consultation as covering live animals throughout the entire slaughter process from arrival at the abattoir until the time that life expires.

' CCTV' is defined for the purposes of this consultation as system for recording, accessing and storing visual images in real-time (where the length of time of the recorded event is exactly the same as the time of the event itself) within a closed network ( i.e. one that does not broadcast or transmit images beyond the pre-determined network of users and access points) that offers the possibility both of immediate access and playback and of storage and later retrieval. This is taken to include the use of action or Go-Pro type cameras.

Scope of this consultation

The Scottish Government committed to consult, in its Programme for Government 2017-2018, on the introduction of compulsory video recording of slaughter at abattoirs in Scotland to aid enforcement of welfare requirements by abattoir management and Food Standards Scotland.

The proposals outlined in this consultation relate to the compulsory installation and operation of CCTV equipment in all areas of approved slaughterhouses where live animals are present, e.g. where they are unloaded, kept, handled, stunned or killed. The proposals in relation to the output of CCTV recording is for all output to be kept for a statutory minimum of 90 days and for authorised officers, e.g. Official Veterinarians from Food Standards Scotland and staff from organisations approved by the Scottish Ministers, to have unrestricted access to output for the purpose of monitoring and verifying animal welfare standards in the slaughterhouse. No other persons other than authorised officers and those employed by the slaughterhouse would be entitled to access these records.

Geographical extent

Animal welfare is a devolved matter and this consultation applies to the potential introduction of compulsory CCTV recording at approved slaughterhouses in Scotland only. The appropriate administration should be approached for further information on the requirements for slaughterhouses in other parts of the UK.

Business and regulatory impact assessment

If legislation is introduced to require compulsory CCTV monitoring in approved slaughterhouses in Scotland there may be business implications for those involved in and concerned with the slaughter of animals for human consumption. This consultation asks questions in relation to this to help prepare the necessary regulatory impact assessment if any change to the legislation is to be made.


Anyone may reply to this consultation. The Scottish Government would particularly like to hear from organisations and individuals involved in and concerned with the slaughter of animals for human consumption. Campaigns resulting in stock responses will be recorded but may not be individually acknowledged.

Those who have an interest include: food business operators; other trade representatives in the livestock and meat industries; the veterinary profession; animal welfare organisations; animal welfare enforcement bodies; the Farm Animal Welfare Committee; farm assurance schemes; and retailers.

Body responsible for this consultation

The Scottish Government's Animal Welfare Team is responsible for this consultation.


This consultation starts on 28 March 2018 and closes on 20 June 2018. This constitutes a full consultation period of 12 weeks.

How to make an enquiry

If you have any queries about this consultation please contact the Scottish Government Animal Welfare Team (0300-244-9240).

The Scottish Government Consultation Process

Consultation is an essential part of the policy-making process. It gives us the opportunity to consider your opinion and expertise on a proposed area of work.

You can find all our consultations online: Each consultation details the issues under consideration, as well as a way for you to give us your views, either online, by email or by post.

Consultations may involve seeking views in a number of different ways, such as public meetings, focus groups, or other online methods such as Dialogue (

Responses will be analysed and used as part of the decision making process, along with a range of other available information and evidence. We will publish a report of this analysis for every consultation. Depending on the nature of the consultation exercise the responses received may:

  • indicate the need for policy development or review
  • inform the development of a particular policy
  • help decisions to be made between alternative policy proposals
  • be used to finalise legislation before it is implemented

While details of particular circumstances described in a response to a consultation exercise may usefully inform the policy process, consultation exercises cannot address individual concerns and comments, which should be directed to the relevant public body.

Responding to this consultation paper

We are inviting responses to this consultation by 20 June 2018.

Please respond to this consultation using the Scottish Government's consultation platform, Citizen Space. You can view and respond to this consultation online at Responses can be saved and returned to while the consultation is still open. Please ensure that consultation responses are submitted before the closing date of 20 June 2018.

If you are unable to respond online, please send your response with a completed Respondent Information Form (see "Handling your Response" below) to:

Slaughterhouse CCTV Consultation
Scottish Government Animal Welfare Team
P Spur
Saughton House
Broomhouse Drive
EH11 3XD

Handling your response

If you respond using Citizen Space (, you will be directed to the Respondent Information Form. Please indicate how you wish your response to be handled and, in particular, whether you are happy for your response to published.

If you are unable to respond via Citizen Space, please complete and return the Respondent Information Form included in this document. If you ask for your response not to be published, we will regard it as confidential, and we will treat it accordingly.

All respondents should be aware that the Scottish Government is subject to the provisions of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 and would therefore have to consider any request made to it under the Act for information relating to responses made to this consultation exercise.

Next steps in the process

Where respondents have given permission for their response to be made public, and after we have checked that they contain no potentially defamatory material, responses will be made available to the public at If you use Citizen Space to respond, you will receive a copy of your response via email.

Following the closing date, all responses will be analysed and considered along with any other available evidence to help us determine the best approach to CCTV in Scottish slaughterhouses. Responses will be published where we have been given permission to do so.

Comments and complaints

If you have any comments about how this consultation exercise has been conducted, please send them to


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