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  • The Government has approached the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) for assistance in constructing certified abattoirs that will provide appropriate conditions under which animal butchering takes place.
  • Agriculture, Labour and Social Security Minister, Hon. Derrick Kellier, says this is one of several measures being undertaken to enhance and safeguard the quality of locally produced foods.
  • Mr. Kellier said plans are being developed to construct and operate “duly certified abattoirs” through public-private partnerships.

The Government has approached the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) for assistance in constructing certified abattoirs that will provide appropriate conditions under which animal butchering takes place.

Agriculture, Labour and Social Security Minister, Hon. Derrick Kellier, says this is one of several measures being undertaken to enhance and safeguard the quality of locally produced foods.

Speaking at the annual Minard Livestock and Beef Festival, at Minard Farm Estate, Brown’s Town, St. Ann, on November 13, where he also launched the National Animal Identification and Traceability System (NAITS), Mr. Kellier said plans are being developed to construct and operate “duly certified abattoirs” through public-private partnerships.

“We have done the necessary studies, and we are now in dialogue with the IDB to assist us in this framework as well as to deal with funding,” he added.

Meanwhile, Mr. Kellier said the National Animal Identification and Traceability System is another aspect of the Government’s thrust to improve the quality of food production.

The initiative, which commenced at Minard Estate, will entail tagging of approximately 60,000 heads of dairy and beef cattle, and the issuing of  ‘passports’ to the owners to document the animals’ bio and genetic data.  The project is also expected to serve as a deterrent against praedial larceny.

 

Mr. Kellier said the Food Safety Policy, which has been promulgated, has created an “institutional arrangement” which enables all relevant government agencies to work collaboratively to create healthy environments for safe food production.

He said the Ministry continues to work with farmers and exporters, under its Food Safety Modernization Programme, to carry out activities aimed at enhancing the quality of outputs.

These, he said, include: training for farmers; assisting exporters to upgrade their facilities to required standards; and developing guiding protocols targeting certification under good agricultural practices.

“Two weeks ago I announced a comprehensive certification programme for all our agro-parks, to commence in the 2015/16 financial year,” Mr. Kellier added.

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