HYDERABAD: Most Indians prefer buying red meat right after its slaughter and ignore the fact that the meat is free of harmful microbes only for two hours at room temperature. To resolve such concerns regarding hygiene with meat, scientists at the Indian Council of Agricultural Research’s (ICAR) National Research Centre for Meat have developed a portable sheep and goat meat production facility. Termed as P-Mart, this portable facility has four units made of food-grade stainless steel. Combined with a 1.5 cubic-meter biogas plant, it forms an ideal setting to ensure effective waste management, water management, cleanliness and energy efficiency.
According to Dr C Ramakrishna, senior scientist at ICAR-NRC for meat, there is an absence of a regulatory mechanism through the entire process of housing the animals, shifting them to slaughter houses and then transporting to retail outlets. He stated that P-Mart will fill the gap in the existing supply chain of meat from producers to consumers and provide a hygienic product.
The facility will and take care of every minute detail to ensure that the meat is processed and waste is disposed in a hygienic manner. Ideally, having two workers will be required at a P-Mart and customers will only see the meat after it is stocked in steel boxes that can be taken home. Both customers and owners could have apprehensions about it, and the status-quo can be changed by municipalities and municipal corporations, opined Dr Ramakrishna.
“Municipal administrations can at least begin by opening one or two P-Marts and making private people to run them, so that myths are dispelled. Animal husbandry, FSSAI, pollution control and animal welfare board and all other concerned departments should work together with a single objective of supplying hygienic meat to the people. NRC for Meat is ready to take the lead,” he assured. Presently, NRC is in the process of transferring P-Mart’s technology to interested companies.