Bites: A stunning development for lobsters

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The Independent Online

A new scientific study has apparently disproved the previous received wisdom that invertebrates such as prawns and crabs do not feel pain.

Findings published by Professor Robert Elwood, a specialist in animal behaviour at Queen's University in Belfast, showed that prawns reacted to exposure to acetic acid by grooming their antennae for prolonged periods, thus renewing concerns about the way crustaceans are currently killed in restaurant kitchens chilled and knifed or boiled alive.

Step forward Simon Buckhaven, the inventor of a device to kill crustaceans more humanely by electronically stunning them in a salt-water solution.

The CrustaStun (pictured), the lobster euthanasia device, was named one of the inventions of the year this time last year by Time. Now various prototypes have gone through the necessary compliance testing. A production model, manufactured in the UK, will be available for sale to lobster-loving chefs and restaurateurs from January priced 2,500 plus VAT.

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