Guidance: Send cattle to slaughter

British Cattle Movement Service

November 8
09:20 2022

Before you send animals to slaughter at a licensed slaughterhouse, you must make sure that each animal:

Without these, an animal may be rejected by the slaughterhouse.

You cannot send animals to slaughterhouse if they:

  • have been refused a passport
  • were born before 1996

These animals cannot enter the food chain. Read the guidance on cattle without passports.

You also cannot send animals to slaughter if you have movement restrictions on your herd. For example, because bovine tuberculosis (TB) has been found in your herd.

What you need to record and report

When you send animals to slaughter you must:

You must carry out these actions so that cattle can be traced. This is a legal requirement to prevent and control the outbreak of disease.

If you fail to do this, you could have movement restrictions placed on your herd, get reduced subsidy payments or be prosecuted.

A slaughterhouse may report the off movements on your behalf. But as the keeper, youre still responsible for making sure BCMS has received the information within the deadlines for movement reporting.

Published 6 May 2014
Last updated 8 November 2022 +show all updates
  1. Updated to include information about when you cannot send cattle to slaughter, the legal requirement to carry out cattle tracing tasks and the consequences for not completing the tasks.

  2. This guidance has been updated to show it no longer applies to Scotland.

  3. First published.

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