MEATS FOR THE BELLY: THE GOOD, THE BAD, THE UGLY

Professor Elisha Zhiri Jiya

Thursday 13th January 2022

 Mr. Vice-Chancellor Sir, to avoid the bad and the ugly and to produce not just meats for the belly but good meats, efforts must be geared towards producing meat and meat products that are of high quality with basic emphasis on good nutrition, environment, the welfare of the meat animal as well as the processing
and preservation procedures as highlighted by this lecture. My contributions demonstrated the use of non-conventional feed ingredients in producing quality meats using poultry and rabbits which are early maturing with quick turnover.

The present boom in the meat industry requires close care by the industry players in order to save the consumers from the bad and
the ugly. The following recommendations are made:
i. The government at all levels should establish modern abattoirs and initiate private sector collaboration in order to have modern abattoir facilities with a view to ensuring the proper slaughtering of animals in an hygienic and wholesome manner.

ii. Government should ensure that meat vans with cold rooms are available and used for transportation and storage of meat products.

iii. An integrated link should be established to facilitate the exchange of knowledge between researchers, producers, abattoir processors, and consumers. The need for meats with traceability to abattoirs and livestock producers should be established to curtail sharp practices in the industry as practiced in a developing
a nation like Uruguay.

iv. A re-awakening of sanitary or meat inspectors is advocated in order to enforce strict healthy standards that comply with a hazard analysis of critical control points (HACCP) especially abattoir meat processors and meat vendors.

v. The present open meat market and hawking of meat and meat products is unacceptable. Packaging of fresh meat and meat products is important and should be domiciled in shops and supermarkets.

vi. The present insecurity cannot guarantee food security especially adequate protein of animal origin. Government should be pragmatic in ensuring the security of lives.

vii. Research is key to the development of any nation. Government should invest and also provide enabling the atmosphere for private sponsors in research especially in the livestock sub-sector.

viii. There is the need for training and re-training of the players in the meat industry especially abattoir workers.

ix. High penalty through the enactment of laws should be paid by those who indulge in bad and ugly practices in the meat industry especially abattoir workers.

x. With the emerging global markets, there is a critical need for improvement on our local breeds that are adapted to our environment and disease resistant with potential for quality meat production. Meat quality enhancement techniques and the development of value-added products are also needed in order to meet up consumers' demand.