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Trent Consultants News Legislative Loopholes in Korea


Ontario, Canada -- (SBWIRE) -- 11/22/2009 -- Trent Consultants News: Livestock Industry Act classifies dogs as livestock under Article 2 – despite protest this went through. However, dogs are not viewed as livestock according to Processing of Livestock Products Act, thus dogs are not to be slaughtered, processed and consumed as food. The Ministry of Environment included dogs as livestock in ‘the Act related to the management and the use of excretion’ on September 2007. In August 2008, The Ministry said it would categorize dogs as livestock to regulate the sanitation practices of large-scale dog breeders. The central and local governments have refrained from putting dogs on a par with cattle, chickens and other livestock as it means an official recognition of dog meat as food. Under the some part of current laws, it is theoretically illegal to butcher dogs and trade their meat. However, as dogs are not currently listed as livestock, there are no legal grounds to regulate dog meat restaurants and those who breed dogs for human consumption.

It is therefore unclear whether eating dogs is illegal or not in Korea. Each ministry enforces different laws that are conflicting. It gives no clear-cut answer to the question of whether dogmeat sales are illegal. Korea has no rule directly regulating dogmeat.

In early 2008, the Seoul metropolitan government has decided that production and sale of dog meat needs to be regulated as a public health measure, as the current ambiguity has led to unhygienic and unsafe slaughter and distribution of dog meat. It therefore wants to revise the Processing of Livestock Products Act to include dogs as livestock. This will result in making the sale of dog meat a legitimate activity, allowing any shop to stock canned dog, dog sausage, dog ham and similar products, and any restaurant to serve steamed dog meat, dog ribs, steamed dog legs and other items made from dogs. It is thought that this might have been the reason for the authorities to promote the legalization of dog meat.

Seoul Municipality’s recent move on issuing a Dog Meat Hygiene Management Policy is an example that demonstrates the government’s intention to legalize dog eating Korea. Public hearings were planned to be held in May 2008 to discuss amendments to the Livestock Products Processing Law before it goes forward for parliamentary deliberations. The hearing plan has been cancelled and the city said that it would only conduct the sanitary inspection over the existing dogmeat selling restaurants. The city unofficially said that it is the sanitary inspection per se, nothing more than that.

But one should be aware that the city never stated that the inspection has nothing to do with its attempt to propose amendments. The proposed amendments to the Livestock Products Processing Law are intended to regulate the hygienic component of dog slaughter for food, not the humane component. This is not going to stop the abuse of dogs while they are raised and butchered for food. It may help to prevent some of the cruel activities in street markets – such as the beating of dogs in public. However, Korea’s Animal Protection Law already states that animal mistreatment shall be punished, and cruelty to dogs on the streets is currently covered under this law. If dogs are considered to be livestock, the number of dogs subjected to cruelty will increase drastically, as they will suffer from the same institutionalized abuse that cows, chickens and pigs currently face. From

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