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Meat Quality and Safety Measures

Most of the export-oriented meat processing plants in India follow world class sanitary and phytosanitary measures given by the OIE, a referral institution of WTO. The plants are certified with HACCP (Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points), ISO-9002 and SGS meeting the OIE norms. These measures are for meat safety which starts right at the

Primary production level either with the farmers raising 5 – 20 animals or in the feedlot. The identification and trace ability of the animals from production source to the abattoir is completely maintained. It is ensured that animals have been raised under disease free conditions of the diseases related to List ‘A’ of OIE. Except for Foot and Mouth Disease, which is endemic in a few pockets in India and has an insignificant incidence (0.001%), India is free from Rinderpest, Contagious Bovine Pleuropneumonia etc. India has now launched a massive FMD control programme with Central Government assistance to make the three zones free of FMD comprising of 56 districts.

In the HACCP, the Critical Control Points (CCP) are closely monitored at the reception of the animals (procured from disease free areas), ante-mortem examination, post mortem examination, chilling of carcasses at 0 - 4 degree Celsius for 24 hours to bring pH level below 7, freezing of deboned meat at –35 to –40 degree Celsius for 10 – 12 hours and storage at –18 degree Celsius. All these measures exclude the possibility of transferring any contagious/infectious/zoonotic disease to the importing countries.

The in-house quality laboratories in the plants ensure the absence of Salmonella, Listeria and permissible limits of E-Coli, Coliform bacteria (Photograph 7).

Almost all the export oriented plants follow the safety specifications given by the Meat and Meat Product Order of 1993 issued by the Directorate of Marketing and Inspection, Government of India. In addition, the measures recommended in Codex Alimentarius are also implemented.

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