Sokoto Journal of Veterinary Sciences
Nwanta et al. /Sokoto Journal of Veterinary Sciences (2008). 7(2): 61-67.
Abattoir operations and waste management in Nigeria: A review of challenges and prospects JA Nwanta1*, JI Onunkwo1, VE Ezenduka1, PO Phil-Eze2 and SC Egege3 Department of Veterinary Public Health and Preventive Medicine, University of Nigeria, Nsukka. Nigeria 2 Department of Geography, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria 3 Department of Veterinary Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Nigeria *Correspondence Author: Tel.: +2348034513051; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org 1
Abstract The poor state of our national abattoirs, meat processing plants, ineffective meat inspection service and the resultant risk of consuming unwholesome meat have been issues of public health and global environmental concerns. Abattoir inspection of live animals (ante–mortem) and the carcass (post–mortem) are crucial towards surveillance network for animal diseases and zoonoses as well as ensuring the suitability of meat and byproducts for their proposed use. The nations desire to achieve high level of food safety and quality of life may be a mirage if the current challenges militating against the establishment, operations and management of abattoirs are not given attention. This paper reviews the current state of the Nations abattoir operations and waste management and also discussed the challenges and prospects of the industry in respect of environmental quality and public health. The paper concludes that Local governments and private entrepreneurs should be encouraged to establish and manage abattoirs, slaughter houses and slabs nationwide for a more effective management. Keywords: Abattoir operation, environment, public health, waste management, zoonotic diseases 60
Sokoto Journal of Veterinary Sciences, Volume 7 (Number 2): November 2008
Introduction In Nigeria, the development and growth of livestock production has been on the increase and has guaranteed steady supply of food animals meant for slaughter and processing for human consumption. The poor state of abattoirs and meat processing plants; the ineffective meat inspection services and the resultant consumption of unwholesome meat by the public have become a major cause of concern to all stakeholders in the industry and general public. The nation‟s clamour, and indeed desire to achieve national self – sufficiency in food production, food security and food safety though noble one, is of little or no value if what ends up on consumer‟s table as dishes for consumption are unwholesome. Proper abattoir operation and management including efficient inspection of live animal (ante – mortem) and the carcass (post– mortem) are crucial towards surveillance network for animal diseases and zoonoses as well as ensuring suitability of meat and by products for their proposed use. The Fourth Schedule of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria, subsection 1(e), states amongst others that the main functions of the Local Government Councils will be “establishment, maintenance and regulation of slaughter houses, markets, motor parks and public conveniences”. Unfortunately, the only interest most local government agencies have shown in this regard seems to be revenue collection from these establishments. The upsurge in the prevalence of communicable and zoonotic diseases such as Tuberculosis, Cysticercosis, Trichinoses etc in our communities are additional pointers to the relevance of our abattoirs and slaughter houses as disease surveillance points. The numerous wastes produced by abattoir operation not only pose a significant challenge to effective environmental management but also are associated with decrease air quality of the environment, potential transferable antimicrobial resistance patterns, and several infectious agents that can be pathogenic to...