Debate over live cooking lobster erupts: ‘Not applicable in civilized country’

Fresh lobster is one of the most popular dishes at Wow Crop in Rotterdam. Live crabs are thrown into boiling water several times a night. They didn’t think it was pathetic. An employee of a seafood restaurant said, “We do this because it’s the best way to make crabs as fresh as possible. We are a Chinese restaurant and have a tradition in China for many years.”

Why is cooking the best way to kill animals? “The rotting process in crabs sets in quickly, so this is a great way to prepare.”


In the UK, cooking crabs and crabs alive will soon be a thing of the past. The British government has decided to allow lobster, squid, octopus and crabs to come under the Animal Welfare Bill. So the ban on live cooking seems inevitable. According to the British media. Switzerland and New Zealand already have such bans.

There is a debate in our country as to whether such a ban should be introduced. The Animal Party has been fighting for this for years. In 2013, the party submitted its first failed motion in the House of Representatives. In 2018, the party made another attempt. The motion did not get a majority then.

‘Eleventh Evidence’

“We are going to reconsider this during next week’s budget debate,” said Member of Parliament Frank Wassenberg. “We are a civilized country. You do not cook animals alive. Previous studies show that crabs experience pain, which is another proof.”

PVV, GroenLinks, SP, PvdA supported the proposal. When asked, D66 and ChristenUnie say they have not yet decided whether to support a plan: if they do, there will be a majority in favor.

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Looking for an alternative

The Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Standards is also not standing still. A spokeswoman for Minister Carola Shouton said the ministry would investigate the British investigation. “It would be nice to have more research done here,” the spokesman said.

Then the question is: which method is acceptable? The Ministry wants more information. For example, alternative ways of killing animals can be stunning or electric shocking.

Zoologist and expert Kert Flick also advocates for a ban and humanitarian change. “Crabs are invertebrates, which is why they are often thought of as having no pain. The nervous system of vertebrates functions very differently than that of vertebrates.”


So they are affected differently than humans or mammals, but that does not mean they are not injured To. “We know they have antennas in their head that allow them to feel and experience harmful stimuli,” says Flick.

Our country has strict rules for killing vertebrates like cows or pigs. Roughly speaking, the animal should die as soon as possible and faint and die within seconds. “But a lobster can live in boiling water for a minute or more and then experience those nasty stimuli. I would say: If you can prevent bad things, why shouldn’t we do it?”

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