HA NOI — Drastic measures have been urged to stop the transportation of unpackaged animal and poultry meat in open vehicles.
At present, animal carcasses destined for traditional markets and street vendors are mostly transported uncovered by motorbikes, said Phan Van Dong, deputy director of the Animal Health Department.
That meant the transport process was making the meat unhygienic, he said.
Only meat for sale in supermarkets was transported by covered vehicles as required by regulation.
Nguyen Thi Xuan Thu, Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, said localities had been ordered to improve meat transport vehicles to ensure standards of food hygiene.
Thu said 12 provinces and cities in the northern region breached regulations in their slaughtering, transporting and retailing of meat, with Ha Noi the worst.
Dong said only 10 modern abattoirs were operating in Ha Noi, Hai Duong and Nam Dinh. Nine provinces didn't have them, he said.
Lack of direction and public awareness was to blame. Traditional slaughterhouses were operating illegally and were not penalised, he said. Viet Nam now has more than 28,000 illegal slaughterhouses, including about 11,500 in 12 major provinces and cities.
Authorised agency inspections were carried out on about 900, equal to 8 per cent of the total.
Deputy Minister Thu also ordered provincial leaders to propose solutions. She said the ministry was willing to support them in bringing the situation under control. — VNS