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In Asia and the Pacific region, consumers have become increasingly concerned with the improved safety of meat and are putting pressure on governments to initiate substantial hygienic improvements in the abattoir sector. To assist countries in the region, FAO initiated a technical mission to five countries to gather updated information and develop strategies to upgrade the abattoir sector, with a focus on small- to medium-sized slaughter facilities.

The abattoir sector in this region is composed of three markedly different groups. The first are the relatively new, well equipped and hygienically operating abattoirs that produce for export or domestic quality meat markets. The second are large abattoirs in major cities that were built a long time ago and function in an unsatisfactory state of repair, creating tremendous pollution problems primarily in the inner city areas and with products which often do not meet hygienic standards. The third and largest group is composed of small- to medium-sized private or municipal abattoirs. This group entails a wide scope of types and categories in terms of availability and quality of equipment and slaughter hygiene, ranging from acceptable handling procedures to absolutely disastrous and hazardous practices that result in heavily contaminated meat and serious food safety risks.

The overwhelming majority of private and public slaughterhouses in the region cater to traditional meat markets with “hot” or unrefrigerated meat. This is the sector where profound technical and hygienic improvements are needed in order to supply clean meat to consumers. Improvements are urgently required for practically all elements within the chain of handling slaughtered animals, slaughtering and carcass dressing as well as meat cutting and deboning.

This publication highlights the findings of the research mission and provides recommendations on technical improvements for simple and better quality slaughter facilities. In addition, it presents examples of practical solutions such as advanced line-slaughter systems, designs for booth slaughter, methods of abattoir effluent treatment and the like. Drawings and illustrations are included.

It is hoped that this publication will pave the way for cooperation at national and regional levels – by abattoir sector managers, the engineering sector and the veterinary sector – in working out strategies to upgrade the abattoir sector in the region.

He Changchui
Assistant Director General
and FAO Regional Representative for Asia and the Pacific

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