Shechita (Hebrew:שְׁחִיטָה; also transliterated shechitah, shehitah, shehita) is the ritual slaughter of mammals and birds according to Jewish dietary laws. The act is performed by severing the trachea, oesophagus, carotid arteries and jugular veins using an extremely sharp blade ("chalef"), and allowing the blood to drain out.
The animal must be killed with respect and compassion by a shochet (ritual slaughterer), a religious Jew who is duly licensed and trained. The animal can be in a number of positions; when the animal is lying on its back, this is referred to as shechita munachat; in a standing position it is known as shechita me'umedet.
If the hindquarters of kosher mammals are to be eaten by Jews, they must be 'porged' - stripped of veins, chelev (caul fat and suet) and sinews in accordance with a strict procedure.[Because of the expense of porging and the skill required to properly separate out the forbidden parts, a large portion of the meat of kosher mammals slaughtered through shechita in the United States winds up on the non-kosher market.