The Government through the Ministry of Agriculture Animal Industry and Fisheries (MAAIF) has revealed plans to rehabilitate and improve abattoirs across the country in order improve the meat hygiene and quality so as to meet the international market standards.
The plans were revealed by the Under Secretary MAAIF, Ronald Ssegawa Gyagenda during a Market Oriented and Environmentally Sustainable Beef Meat Industry in Uganda (MOBIP) assessment meeting held at National Agricultural Research Organisation headquarters at kajjansi in wakiso district.
The ministry has earmarked Sanga slaughterhouse in Kiruhura District as a model facility that will serve as a benchmark for other abattoirs across the country. The Principal Veterinary Officer MAAIF, Jolly Hoona revealed that the evaluation of the facility is complete and the ministry is in the process of acquiring land where the facility sits.
Hoona told Gateway News that the ministry is hoping to use key areas especially in the cattle corridor to ensure that meat will be purchased from clean and safe facilities.
“The project is handling animals right from farm production to transporting live animals to the slaughter place ensuring the treatment of animals in a humane manner to when it is slaughtered , meat transportation in safe ways to the butchers till the last consumer or buyer,” Hoona added
“Apparently only 4 butcheries in the country meet the national standards and we intend to work on the butchery marketing areas around Kampala to ensure that the consumers are buying the right meat which wouldn’t make them sick.”
However, Gyagenda has questioned the project members for failing to implement the project ahead of its deadline in August next year. He has urged the members to proceed with the project as the ministry negotiates a further extension.
“We should be at the forefront to ensure that the funds are utilized, we need to use the grant to promote the meat industry, with over USD 15 million, we can improve the quality of our meat and exploit the international market. The laws are in place and all we need is implementation.Improved facilities are a good step in right direction if we are to improve the sector” Gyagenda said
The European Union funded project was set to span for 3 years but was affected by delays owing to the emergency of COVID-19 that saw works halted. On top of the COVID-19 induced delays, the project has been hit by low funds absorption rate, delayed procurement of inputs, and absence of a budget line to carter for extra responsibility allowances for MAAIF to assign to the project.