Butchers, maintenance personnel and staff at the Mirabeau Abattoir are confident that the training received will result in improvement of the operations and better quality of meat to consumers. On June 18 and 19th, the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) through Mr. Daniele Baccilieri from the Italy based company COGEMAT, conducted an assessment of the equipment at the facility and exposed several persons to safety regulations when using such facility. Baccilieri, in delivering the training utilized best practices, in an effort to raise awareness on the safety regulations governing operations at the facility. IICA through the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Infrastructure remains committed to providing technical assistance towards strengthening operations at the Mirabeau slaughterhouse (Abattoir) in St. Andrew: – an obligation that both Ministries welcome and view as very critical, given Government’s investment in such modern facility.
Floor Supervisor at the Abattoir Amanda Charles Francis admitted, “the training will help us to understand and improve our roles here. It is easier now to understand the safety regulations, we have to follow and improve to ensure that we have the best product on the market. I hope that staff would utilize the training and remember the importance of having the proper attire, ensuring that the place is well sanitized and keep the standards of safety. “
Charles Francis recommends that purchasing meat at the slaughter house is a step in the right direction. “I want to encourage persons to purchase meats slaughtered here, as we are following all the guidelines, you are safe with us, as we ensure that our meat is ready for consumption on the market,” she said.
Frankie Buckmire, from the Ministry of Agriculture – Veterinary and Livestock Division also emphasized the benefits of the initiative, “this training will help everyone to improve their skills, like the use of machines, sterilization of machines and overall operations,” he said.
Chief Veterinary and Livestock Officer within the Ministry of Agriculture Dr. Kimond Cummings expressed his gratitude to IICA for the support and described the engagements as timely. “This training falls under the heading of occupational safety and is very important; I think it is very timely, given the need for staff awareness. We think if the staff is properly trained on how to use the equipment it could reduce bodily harm and enhance operations at the facility. We hope this training could reinforce what persons who used the facility already know with regards to safety and proper use of the equipment to ensure longevity.”
Also reiterating the benefits of the facility was IICA National specialist for Grenada Derek Charles who said, “The objective is to ensure workers and staff know how to use the equipment to avoid breakdown and costly repairs. I think with the two Ministries and IICA, we can really bring this abattoir into full operations.”
The training aspiration outlined by Charles is to build capacity of the staff and butchers to use equipment properly and protect the welfare of animals, thus allowing consumers to have safer meat or wholesome meat from the abattoir.
IICA has been involved with this project since 2018, when a request was made by the Ministry of Agriculture for technical support. The organization continues to provide equipment, assessment, comprehensive report and recommendations towards supporting the operations at Mirabeau. This assessment of equipment and training of staff forms part of the groundwork completed by the international organization in preparation of its IICA’s Annual Work Plan.