HA NOI — The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has asked provinces which have not set up hygienic slaughter house projects to speed up their work.
By the end of June this year, six provinces in the northern area of the country did not have any such projects, including Yen Bai, Nam Dinh, Bac Kan, Cao Bang, Tuyen Quang and Bac Giang.
The ministry also asked authorities in the cities and provinces to create good conditions for individuals and organisations to build slaughter houses in the areas, as well as closely manage the houses and livestock and poultry trading in the areas.
Cities and provinces must report the progress of their projects to the ministry before November 30.
Pham Duy Cuong, chairman of Yen Bai People's Committee, said the province met a lot of obstacles in compiling the project.
The biggest difficulty was that commune authorities neglected to control slaughtering operations, so residents lack awareness of proper food hygiene and safety procedures.
The pilot collective slaughter houses also cannot compete with private slaughter houses, as private ones do not have to go through quarantine and thus have cheaper prices, he said.
Next time the province will heighten supervision of livestock and poultry trading in the local market to force small traders to quarantine their products.
If collective slaughter houses can demonstrate they are capable of putting out reliable products, investors will be motivated to invest in setting up more.
Meanwhile, chairman of the Bac Giang People's Committee Duong Van Thai said the province met difficulties in ground clearing for the slaughter houses.
Moreover, co-ordination between authorities from the grassroots to the upper levels was not good, so the project was not scrutinized closely enough.
However, the province has not found effective measures to improve co-ordination between authorities at different levels, he said.
More than 30 cities and provinces' projects were approved by local people's committees.
A total of 20 other cities and provinces are compiling the projects, such as northern provinces Dien Bien and Lao Cai, central province Quang Tri and southern province Bac Lieu.
The country now has nearly 30,000 slaughter houses, but only 30 per cent of them were well managed and met regulations on food hygiene and safety, according to uncompleted statistics of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.
The ministry initially asked cities and provinces to set up the project of building hygienic slaughter houses in 2004. — VNS