The United Kingdom is considering action to make it illegal to boil live lobsters.

Crustacean Compassion, an animal welfare organization based in the U.K., is looking to follow Switzerland’s lead and convince government officials to ban the practice of boiling lobsters alive.

The organization has posted a petition to protect crabs and lobsters from pain under the Animal Welfare Act of 2006. If the crustaceans are added to the Animal Welfare Act, then anyone “farming them, storing them or slaughtering them must abide by basic animal welfare rules.” That would include providing enough food and using humane slaughter methods. So far the petition, which was posted on, has garnered over 27,000 signatures.

Inhumane slaughter methods is not the only thing that has some U.K. shoppers up in arms, though. A number of Amazon users are upset over its decision to sell live lobsters through a London-based third-party seller, Fine Food Specialists.

Fine Food Specialists sell Canadian-caught lobsters for roughly $65 on Amazon, including shipping. The Independent, an online U.K. newspaper, reported that lobsters can face as long as a week trapped inside containers during delivery.

Amazon users have started to leave one-star reviews on the listing, calling the act “barbaric,” “cruel” and “inappropriate.”

Scientists with the Lobster Institute at the University of Maine say the animals aren’t developed enough to feel pain.

“For an organism to perceive pain it must have a more complex nervous system,” the institute says on its website.

Through November of last year, the U.K. imported nearly $11 million of live lobster, most of it caught in Maine.

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or login to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.