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Move to upgrade meat shops

Kohima, June 24: An awareness programme on modernisation of meat shops under National Mission on Food Processing 2013-17 was held at Zonal Council Hall, Kohima, today.

Officer on special duty, industries and commerce department, B. Longkumer, who chaired the programme, gave a short briefing on the scheme on modernisation of meat shops and on the sale of safe meat in the market.

He said funds released for the purpose should be utilised in a proper manner and the public should also see to it that the schemes are implemented properly.

Deputy director, industries and commerce, Khrielie Peseyie, said a majority of the population in India consumes meat from traditional meat shops, where individual butchers slaughter sheep/goats for sale of meat in small quantities throughout the day. He said the scheme aims at improving overall hygiene in the meat shops by providing basic infrastructure and equipment.

“This will also ensure food safety rules and regulation compliance according to the Food Safety and Standards Act Act, 2006, and cater to public health concerns as a whole,” he added. He said this would provide wholesome meat to the consumers.

Peseyie added that the modernisation of meat shops would also help to protect and sustain the livelihoods of people and will improve the competitiveness in the supply of wholesome meat vis-à-vis the development of new retail chains.

He said all implementing agencies/organisations such as government or public sector undertakings, joint ventures, NGOs, self-help groups and individuals engaged in the operation of meat shops would be eligible for financial assistance under the scheme.

Kuko Nuh, another official from the directorate of industries and commerce, highlighted prototypes of modernised meat shops and described three types of prototypes, their specifications and abstract of cost.

Deputy director, veterinary and animal husbandry, Hevito Shohe, spoke of handling of meat, animal transport, quality adherence practices, equipment involved, waste collection and disposal, facilities in retail shops, good hygienic practices, meat cutting and packaging, various methods of meat preservation and related regulations.

The state’s food safety officer, Kezhangulie, gave a presentation on Food Safety Standards Authority of India.

During the Eleventh Plan period, the Nagaland government had slashed the import rate of meat from 63.10 per cent to 36.9 per cent.

This was done by implementing various schemes and through the active participation of marginal and commercial livestock farmers.

The amount of money spent on meat in the past one-and-a-half decades was Rs 375 crore annually, according to a sample survey report of the veterinary department.

However, now it has come down to Rs 215 crore.