Italy’s highest court handed down a victory for animal rights activists last week that mandates that restaurants can no longer keep lobsters on ice because it causes them unjustifiable suffering. It is a decision applauded by many who viewed the crustaceans as being subjected to unnecessary discomfort. As much as a applaud such decisions in favor of animals, it does still leave the rather obvious conflict with the fact that the lobsters are then boiled alive.
In upholding a lower court order, the owner of a restaurant near Florence was ordered to pay a 2,000 euro fine ($5,593) as well as 3,000 euros in legal fees.
The court acknowledged the disconnect between protecting the comfort of lobsters right up to the time that they are dropped in boiling water: “While the particular method of cooking can be considered legal by recognizing that it is commonly used, the suffering caused by detaining the animals while they wait to be cooked cannot be justified in that way,.”
While I like lobsters, I have not eaten them for many years because I cannot get around the notion boiling the creatures alive.