Environment Secretary Michael Gove is set to launch a consultation to consider banning the practice of boiling lobsters alive.
The proposed move has already sparked debate amongst fellow Conservative members who believe the move is part of a plan for his ascension to leadership.
“It’s Michael’s latest crusade to woo the luvvies in his blatant leadership bid,” a Tory source told the Mirror.
“He’s desperate to look like a planet-hugging animal lover, but his foodie friends are going to be furious. It’s the last claw!”
Lobsters are currently the only animals that are sold to be slaughtered and cooked alive at home, or in restaurants. The proposed ban would cover other crustaceans such as crabs, crayfish and other shellfish.
A spokesperson for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs said: “As Minister [George] Eustice has previously stated this is an issue the Government is considering.
“We are committed to the very highest standards of animal welfare and are taking strong action in this area, including raising maximum sentences for animal cruelty to five years and making CCTV mandatory in slaughterhouses.
“As the Prime Minister has set out, we will make the United Kingdom a world leader in the care and protection of animals as we leave the EU.”
Maisie Tomlinson, Campaign Director of Crustacean Compassion said: “We welcome the government’s intervention on this matter and we hope that the consultation concludes that decapod crustaceans should be subject to the same animal welfare protections as vertebrate animals under the Animal Welfare Act 2006.
“This certainly would include welfare at the time of killing, as many of the ways in which decapods are currently slaughtered are abhorrent.
“We also, however, urge tighter regulations on how decapods are kept whilst waiting for slaughter.
“A recent study found that lobsters were regularly crammed into bright, highly overcrowded tanks with little provision for the welfare needs of the species. We look forward to further engagement with the government in tackling this long-neglected animal welfare issue. “