Animal protection group publishes videos of animal mistreatment

Ljubljana/Maribor – An animal protection group has published videos recorded by hidden cameras in the Košaki slaughterhouse that show mistreatment of animals. After releasing footages of animal suffering at the Ljutomerčan pig farm in summer, the group now exposed the Maribor pig and cattle slaughterhouse. Košaki said it regretted the mistreatment.

“Košaki TMI, which manages one of the largest modern slaughterhouses in Slovenia, is being presented to the public with a slogan ‘Made with lots of love’. Yet hidden camera footages clearly show that animals definitely do not get any love behind the walls of the Košaki abattoir,” the Animal Enterprise Transparency Project group said in a press release.

It said employees were beating the animals, screaming at them, poking them with electric sticks. Pigs and bulls, cows and calves are pushed into gas chambers with electroshocks before they are killed, the group said.

It did note though that apart from kicking the animals and inappropriate use of electric shocks, all the other practices were in line with the EU rules, so it could be assumed that other slaughterhouses in the country operated in a similar way.

Maribor-based Košaki responded by saying that the company was committed to quality and care for consumers, and that this included respect and appropriate treatment of animals.

It expressed regret that given the footages “we are not always entirely successful at this”.

Pointing to its 150-year tradition, Košaki said the “company was constantly striving for respect of national regulations and EU regulations and we are also bound by the quality standards we have in place to make sure food products are irreproachable and safe.”

The company organises regular training and tests for its staff to make sure that they are well equipped for working with animals. If any misconduct is discovered, it is punished, the company said.

Košaki TMI employs about 100 people and posted a revenue of EUR 10.7 million last year, down over 5% compared to 2019, and a profit of EUR 38,000.

Following the release a footage of animal mistreatment from the Ljutomerčan pig farm in summer, the Administration for Food Safety, Veterinary Sector and Plant Protection checked the authenticity of the recording and the situation at the farm to find no major irregularities.