Rwanda Bans Sale Of Unrefrigerated Meat

Inside Nyabugogo modern AbattoirRwanda has banned the supply and sale of meat that is not chilled in cold-rooms for at least 24 hours. Sam Ngendahimana.

Rwanda has banned the sale of meat that has not been refrigerated for at least 24 hours before sale to tame the infection of zoonotic and transmissible diseases, the country’s basic consumer rights watchman Competition and Consumer Protection Authority (RICA) has announced.
Zoonotic diseases, also known as zoonoses, are caused by harmful germs that spread between animals and people ranging from viruses, bacteria, parasites, and fungi.

According to RICA’s Registration and Licensing specialist Gaspard Simbarikure, the directive is based on an earlier regulation given in May 2022 to govern meat businesses but has since been disregarded.

The regulation required all meat retailers to acquire authorized operational licenses and also annexed strict measures for the operators on how to handle meat in slaughterhouses and butcheries.

Simbarikure stated that the new order will assure the safe consumption of meat and avert the risk of contracting meat-borne diseases such as Rift Valley Fever, taeniasis, among others.

“Some were complying with having refrigerating rooms and others not. We have to ensure fair competition. In addition, people will consume unsafe and poor-quality meat,” he told The New Times.

Simbarikure went on to add that the refrigeration order will also need to meet two factors; time of exposure and temperature.

“Chilling must be done at least 24 hours to ensure the effectiveness of the chilling operation. FAO has recommended chilling of at least 24 hours and reaching the temperature between 2-4 0C,” he said.

Germs causing Zootonic diseases can cause many different types of illnesses in people and animals, ranging from mild to serious illnesses and even death.

Animals can sometimes appear healthy even when they are carrying germs that can make people sick, depending on the zoonotic disease.

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