Image copyright Dawn Pitman Image caption Full list of findings from ‘Lobstergate’ report
Lobsters and crabs shouldn’t be boiled alive because they feel pain, researchers have said.
The shocking conclusions have come from an investigation into the methods used in boiling lobster and crab.
The findings by scientists and ethical campaigners Egg UK were included in a “poaching report” by the EU fisheries agency.
It was prompted by the beating up of a 14-year-old lobster at a craft fair.
The lobster was bought at a craft fair by artist Ben Roberts. When the buyer brought it home, the teenager left it to come to him after cooking it with a trowel.
But this was too much for him, and he beat the lobster so hard it slithered out of the pot – narrowly avoiding death as it hit the floor.
The teenager called the police and gave the rest of the lobster to the vet.
But when he inspected the remaining half the lobster and the police officers tried to take it, two men intervened and tried to rip it apart, officials say.
The report says that the lobster had traces of a variety of fungi but this was not at the level typically found in the digestive system of animals.
“In contrast, physical evidence indicated that it had received severe cuts, which would result in crustaceans suffering from a range of illnesses – among which, wounds commonly cause lesions on the hard areas of the shells,” the report says.
Image copyright Dawn Pitman Image caption Lobster and crab victim suffering leg, left and abdominal wounds
The idea of boiling a crustacean alive is anti-ethical, researchers concluded.
“From a scientific perspective, boiling a crustacean alive is definitely unethical.”