AMSTERDAM, Netherlands The Netherlands' largest supermarket chain has
come under fire from animal rights activists after it introduced a
line of halal meat, which is prepared according to Islamic religious
The country's Party For The Animals, which pollsters expect to win a
seat in parliament in elections next month, said Wednesday its members
have sent more than 5,000 complaints to grocer Albert Heijn after it
introduced meat with a halal label last week.
The main point of contention is that most of the animals are
slaughtered without any kind of sedation or pain killers.
"In our country it's forbidden to kill animals without anesthesia,"
party leader Marianne Thieme told The Press. "In 1972, an
exception was made to accommodate a small number of religious groups.
But what we see now is that this is not an exception anymore, it's
becoming a common way of slaughtering."