The Animal Welfare Institute (AWI) has submitted a petition to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) calling for animal welfare reforms in U.S. slaughterhouses.

The AWI proposal lists four actions relating to food safety laws that deal with animal treatment at slaughter:
• Issue guidance to Food Safety and Inspection Service district offices recommending longer suspensions for repeat violators of humane treatment laws.
• Develop procedures for referring alleged instances of animal cruelty to state or local law enforcement.
• Work to achieve greater consistency among state-level humane slaughter enforcement programs.
• Post slaughter establishment enforcement records on the USDA website.

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The petition stems from a recent AWI study looking at state and federal enforcement of humane slaughter laws.