‘Act swiftly against illegal slaughtering’-A A +A
Monday, July 7, 2014
BACOLOD City Councilor Carlos Jose Lopez, chairman of the City Council committee on markets and slaughterhouse, urged the Task Force Botagoy to act immediately on the increasing reports of illegal slaughtering in the city.
Lopez made the call anew after AVM Bernardo Slaughterhouse, private operator of the abattoir owned by the City of Bacolod, revealed last week that due to rampant illegal slaughtering, they noted a decrease of up to 80 percent in their clients particularly the butcher shops and meat vendors at Libertad South Market.
Task Force Botagoy, in-charge of meat inspection in public markets as mandated by City Ordinance No. 459, has been reorganized under the Puentevella administration.
The ordinance authorizes Task Force Botagoy to apprehend and confiscate any carcass or parts thereof of any illegally slaughtered animals, including the slaughtering paraphernalia.
To differentiate the meat slaughtered in the city-owned abattoir from those slaughtered illegally, AVM Bernardo is putting counter markings on meat processed by their facility to indicate that these products passed inspection.
Several meat vendors in Bacolod are reportedly availing the services of an unaccredited slaughterhouse in the neighboring Murcia town.
Glorydee Cometa, plant manager of AVM Bernardo Slaughterhouse, said their marking is being added to the one stamped by the National Meat Inspection Service (NMIS).
Cometa said that meat without the NMIS and AVM markings would be considered hot meat or illegally slaughtered since these have not passed meat inspection.
"We want to let the public know that meat sold in public markets without double or counter markings is not safe to eat," she added.
Cometa said they are concerned about the health of the people of Bacolod that’s why they are implementing the counter markings.
“We don't want others to put the blame on AVM in case something bad happens to the consuming public due to food poisoning because of rampant illegal slaughtering," Cometa said.
No business permit yet
Meanwhile, the Permits and Licensing Division of Bacolod City is not yet releasing the business permit of AVM Bernardo Slaughterhouse.
Marie Ann Biasca, acting head of Permits and Licensing Division, said they still need the advice of the City Legal Office (CLO) following the alleged violations committed by the slaughterhouse operator.
"We know that the slaughterhouse has been inspected and was found to have some violations. Since the CLO is the one handling the case of AVM Bernardo, we have to first get their advice on anything regarding the business permit," she said.
There are still requirements the CLO is asking AVM Bernardo to comply, Biasca said.
Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on July 07, 2014.