Over 1,000 kilos of hot meat confiscated in Cebu City since June 2021
CEBU CITY, Philippines — Hot meat or meat without the proper inspection certification has become rampant in the mountain barangays in Cebu City this year.
So far, the Department of Veterinary Medicine and Fisheries (DVMF) has confiscated more than 1,000 kilos since June 2021, and the meat products have been buried for safe disposal.
The DVMF said that they have intensified their operations against illegal meat shops and butchers in the city due to the widespread selling of uninspected meat in the barangays.
Most of these hot meats are in mountain barangays where butchering hogs, fowl, and cows or carabaos at home are common and individuals tend to sell their butchered meat to neighbors or nearby sitios.
“Kailangan gyod sila magpaihaw sa mga accredited sa NMIS (National Meat Inspection Service) ug sa mga locally registered nga ihawan sa DVMF,” said Dr. Jessica Maribojoc, the officer-in-charge of the DVMF.
The danger for consumers buying hot meat is that they would not know if the hog was sick when butchered or the meat is double dead, which means that the pig died of illness and then butchered to be sold.
She notes that hot meat does not only refer to pork, but to beef, mutton, fowl, and others, which have not been inspected by the NMIS for safety.
However, households are allowed to consume meat they butchered themselves even without the NMIS certification. This has become the common excuse of residents who are caught selling hot meat.
“Naa ganiy moingon nga para daw sa kasal nga lechunonon, pero wala diay kasal, ibaligya ra diay gyod to nila,” said Maribojoc.mountain
The most rampant practice of selling is in the mountain barangays in the city because there is only one registered slaughterhouse in the hinterlands, which is in Barangay Guba.
There used to be a slaughterhouse in Barangay Bonbon, but it was closed for reasons the DVMF could not explain.
With this, hog raisers in the southern mountain barangays could sometimes not afford to travel to Guba just to get their hogs butchered in a certified slaughterhouse.
This has eventually raised the number of unregistered informal butcher houses in the southern barangays.
As much as the DVMF understands the predicament of these barangays, they are still urged to follow the inspection protocol because the safety of the consumers should never be put at risk with selling hot meat.
Every week, the DVMF Meat Inspection Team is also conducting various operations to crackdown on these illegal meat butcher houses.
Maribojoc urged the sellers to apply for a certificate for their slaughterhouse so they will not lose their goods through confiscation and there will be no wastage of resources due to the operations. /rcg
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