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Home / Bullfighting illegal in Mexico?

Bullfighting illegal in Mexico?

16-11-2022

On Monday 7 November, CAS International, AnimaNaturalis and Despacho Va por sus Derechos protested at SENASICA, Mexico’s Food Safety Agency. We asked SENASICA to fine the bullfighting sector. The slaughter of fighting bulls in bullfights has been taking place illegally for 15 years.

illegal

Bullfighting illegal in Mexico? | Picture: CAS International/AnimaNaturalis

Our lawyers in Mexico recently discovered that the slaughter of fighting bulls by the matadores (the bullfighters who kill the bull) is illegal throughout Mexico. This is because it violates two articles of the Federal Animal Health Law[1]. In addition, this activity goes against Mexican rules on killing methods of domesticated and wild animals[2]. The slaughter of fighting bulls during a bullfight is not an exception in this norm.

Illegal

After the bullfight, the slain fighting bull is taken to the slaughterhouse for sale of the meat for human consumption. The manner of slaughtering violates Article 23. It also states that killing an animal not intended for consumption is only allowed when the animal’s welfare is at stake. In the case of animal suffering due to accident, illness or physical incapacity, such an animal may be killed, preferably after the advice of a veterinarian. This is not the case with bullfighting.

Both Article 23 and the rules on methods of killing domestic and wild animals must be compulsorily applied by federal authorities in both states and municipalities. SENASICA is the Mexican body responsible for ensuring that the regulations are correctly applied. For every 6 fighting bulls slaughtered, there is a $500,00 fine.

Actions CAS International and AnimaNaturalis

CAS International and AnimaNaturalis requested the Directorate General of Animal Health to carry out inspections at several bullfights in Mexico. However, these did not take place. As a result, the illegal slaughter of more than 80 bulls remained unpunished. In addition, we submitted a request to sanction the aforementioned bullfights. This request has not yet been acted upon either.

On Monday 7 November, we protested in front of the SENASICA building, together with organisations from several bullfighting countries. Then CAS International and AnimaNaturalis met with Juan Garay Gutiérrez, the director of SENASICA. During the conversation, he did not deny that the law is broken during bullfights. However, he did indicate that imposing sanctions is difficult, due to a lack of personnel and budget.

From CAS International, AnimaNaturalis and Despacho Va por sus Derechos, we will continue our fight so that the law is followed in Mexico. We will not allow the impunity of the bullfighting industry to continue unabated.

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[1] 19, 20 Fracción I y 23 de la Ley Federal de Sanidad Animal

[2] Norma Oficial Mexicana NOM-033-zagzoo-2014