The country's top court argued that the Constitution did not allow easily preventable suffering to be inflicted on animals without a justified cause and the law did not interfere disproportionally with the right to religious freedom.
The Muslim community feels differently, arguing that the Islamic law-prescribed method of ritual slaughter, which does not include stunning, is a key part of the the Muslim religion and thereby also of their religious freedom.
The Constitutional Court however insists that protecting animals before torture helps uphold important moral principles.
A state can prohibit actions incompliant with the basic rules and moral framework of a society and do so without interfering excessively in the right to religious freedom, argued the judges, who were unanimous in their decision.
The act on animal protection does not only prohibit Islamic ritual slaughter but any type of slaughter without stunning.
Moreover, while this makes access to halal meat more difficult, it does not prevent it, since halal-compliant slaughter is possible abroad, the judges wrote.