Humane Slaughter Pilot Agreement
Ecuadorian shrimp producer Cofimar, as well as the Dutch seafood trader Klaas Puul and retailer Albert Heijn, have recently signed a commitment to collaborate with Shrimp Welfare Project (SWP) to improve the welfare of shrimps within the supply chain, introducing humane slaughter practices. This is the first agreement on humane slaughter that SWP has signed with a producer in Ecuador and with a buyer in continental Europe.
Cofimar has committed to upholding the highest standards of shrimp welfare within their farms. As part of their commitments, they will implement limits to stocking densities. Additionally, Cofimar has eliminated eyestalk ablation in shrimps destined for Klaas Puul.
As a cornerstone of this collaboration, SWP will provide Cofimar with electrical stunning equipment developed by the Norwegian company, Optimar. This equipment is designed to ensure that the slaughtering process is as humane as possible, minimising stress and discomfort.
With the implementation of Optimar's stunning equipment, Cofimar aims to stun a significant proportion of its annual shrimp production. This initiative is expected to enhance animal welfare standards within Cofimar's operations and result in the more humane treatment of a minimum of 1,500 metric tonnes of Litopenaeus vannamei shrimps annually (i.e. on average 100 million shrimps per year).
Klaas Puul and Albert Heijn have pledged to prioritise the purchase and sale of stunned shrimps. This commitment by the trader and retailer reinforces the importance of humane treatment in the sourcing and distribution of shrimps.
This collaboration between Cofimar, Klaas Puul, Albert Heijn, and SWP represents a significant milestone in the journey towards improved shrimp welfare standards. By prioritising humane slaughter practices, everyone involved is collectively contributing to a cross-cutting solution to many sustainable development challenges.
As new collaborations continue to be forged, SWP invites like-minded organisations to join the cause and contribute to shrimp welfare.