GO TO SOURCE
WASHINGTON, USA, July 6, 2001: The US government's Agriculture Department denies allegations by Burger King Corp. that government inspectors are failing to enforce humane-handling standards in slaughterhouses. In a recent letter to Agriculture Secretary Ann Veneman, Burger King chief executive John Dasburg said the department's enforcement of the Humane Slaughter Act was unacceptable. The law requires that animals be treated humanely and rendered unconscious before being slaughtered. "We are fully enforcing the law," spokesman Kevin Herglotz said Friday. Animals welfare experts say that conditions in packing plants have improved significantly over the last two years because of plant inspections undertaken by Burger King's competitors, McDonald's and Wendy's. Burger King announced June 28 that it would also start an inspection program but simultaneously petitioned USDA to improve its own enforcement. Officials with Burger King and the Agriculture Department are expected to meet later this month or early August to discuss the company's complaint.