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Abattoir operations, waste generation and management in the Tamale metropolis: Case study of the Tamale slaughterhouse

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Vol. 6(1), pp. 14-19, January 2014
DOI: 10.5897/JPHE2013.0574
ISSN 2006-9723 ©2014 Academic Journals
http://www.academicjournals.org/JPHE
Journal of Public Health and
Epidemiology
Full Length Research Paper
Abattoir operations, waste generation and management
in the Tamale metropolis: Case study of the Tamale
slaughterhouse
J. Fearon*, S. B. Mensah and V. Boateng
Department of Agribusiness Management and Finance, Faculty of Agribusiness and Communication Sciences,
University for Development Studies (UDS), Box TL 1882, Tamale, Ghana.
Accepted 4 December, 2013
The study was conducted to assess the rate of effluent generation and management at the Tamale
abattoir. It also investigated the methods adopted in processing animal carcasses, including
handling/transportation to retail centres. The investigative approach to data collection was adopted in
combination with desk research and other strategies. Waste material generated was estimated based
on calculations by Aniebo et al. (2009). The results show that on average, about 55 cattle, 50 sheep and
20 goats were slaughtered daily at the abattoir, leading to an annual production of 2,475 tons of beef,
270 tons of mutton and 94 tons of chevon. These represent 12, 1.6 and 0.5% of the 2010 national output
of meat in Ghana. The number of livestock (125) slaughtered daily results in 0.7 ton of blood, 0.5 ton of
gut contents, 0.4 ton of waste tissues and 0.7 ton of bone. These translate into a total of 1,159.7 tons of
blood, 822.9 tons of intestinal contents and 636.5 tons of waste tissues discharged into the
environment annually. Handling and transporting carcasses to the various points of sale is generally
done under unhygienic conditions, exposing the meat to all sorts of contaminants. With only one old
wretched meat van serving the abattoir, majority of butchers (93%) resort to the use of other deficient
means including bicycles and taxis (booth) to transport meat to the market, posing a serious threat to
the health of consumers.
Key words: Abattoir, environment, intestinal content, tissue waste, biogas.
INTRODUCTION
The Food and Drug Laws/guidelines of Ghana require
that imported livestock products and those produced
locally meet the requirements specified under the
relevant Ghana Standard for Meat and Meat Products
(First Databank (FDB), 2004). Although the laws provide
butchers and importers of meat with guidelines that
ensure high safety and quality standards as well as a
comprehensive procedure for bringing their activities into
compliance with the law, enforcement appears to be a
problem. Currently, activities at the Tamale abattoir
apparently meet (partially) only 30% of the requirements
specified under the relevant standard for meat production
and none of the storage requirements (FDB, 2004).
Abattoir operations are meant to recover the edible
portions of slaughtered animals for human consumption.
In the process, significant quantities of waste materials
including organic and inorganic solids are generated
(Red Meat Abattoir Association (RMAA), 2010; Steffen &
Kirsten Inc, 1989). The solid waste consists mainly of
bones, undigested ingest and occasionally aborted
foetuses while the liquids comprise of blood, urine, water,
dissolved solids and gut contents. Some researchers
*Corresponding author. E-mail: jimmyfeegh@yahoo.com. Tel: +233206268257.
Table 1. Data for estimating abattoir effluent.
Waste category
Cow
Blood/head (kg)
12.6
Intestinal content/head (kg)
8.0
Waste tissue (kg)
6.4
Bone/head (kg)
11.8
Source: Aniebo et al. (2011).
point out that abattoir activities are responsible for the
pollution of surface and underground waters as well as
air quality which indirectly affect the health of residents
living within the vicinity of abattoirs (Odoemelan and
Ajunwa, 2008; Patra et al., 2007; Raymond, 1977). In
addition, primary producers in affected water bodies may
be destroyed by such pollutants, which may directly affect
fish yield, with serious consequences on diet (Aina and
Adedipe, 1991).
Wrongful discharge of blood and animal faeces into
streams may cause oxygen-depletion as well as nutrient-
over enrichment of the receiving system which could
cause increased rate of toxin accumulation (Nwachukwu
et al., 2011). Humans may also be affected through
outbreak of water borne diseases and other respiratory
and chest diseases (Mohammed and Musa, 2012).
Abattoir waste disposal in many developing countries
including Ghana has been a major challenge for years. In
most cases, waste materials are disposed of without
regard to sound environmental management practices,
thus making them harmful to humans and other terrestrial
and aquatic life. Studies from Nigeria and Ghana show
that many abattoirs in the respective countries either
deposit waste materials in the immediate environs or
dispose of them directly into water bodies, some of which
serve as sources of water for the abattoirs (Adelegan,
2002; Osibanjo and Adie, 2007; Weobong, 2001). Some
people argue that the practice is mainly due to lack of or
inadequate waste recovery and treatment facilities
(Adeyemo et al., 2009).
In Ghana, increasing demand for animal products
especially meat has led to increase in the volume of
abattoir waste generation and there are growing
concerns about the current situation. An enquiry into
activities of the main abattoir in the Tamale metropolis
showed that effluent water from the facility was highly
polluted (Weobong and Adinyira, 2011), with all the
measured parameters exceeding acceptable standards
set by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) of
Ghana. The study further revealed that residents within
the community where the slaughterhouse is located
complained of stench from the effluent, pollution of their
water sources and frequent disease outbreaks among
others. Concerns have also been raised about the man-
ner in which carcasses are prepared and subsequently
handled en route to the markets.
This study therefore sought to estimate the volume of
Fearon et al. 15
meat produced at the abattoir and the corresponding
effluent generated (solid and liquid) given that nothing
seems to have changed by way of proper waste disposal
since the last study revealed a rather worrying situation.
The study as well investigated the process of meat
processing and handling at the abattoir and during
transportation to the markets. The outcome of the study
is expected to first raise consciousness about the level of
waste generation at the abattoir and the potential health
and environmental implications if nothing is done to halt
the situation. It is secondly expected that documentation
of the findings will help to raise awareness about the
unconventional methods employed in handling/
transporting meat from the abattoir to the various market
centres in the metropolis and the potential for
contamination.
METHODOLOGY
The investigative approach to data collection was adopted in
combination with desk research (secondary data collection) and
other strategies. The main abattoir in Tamale was selected for this
study. Data on the number of ruminants (cattle, goats and sheep)
slaughtered daily was collected (through participant observation)
between April and June, 2013. This was backed with data obtained
from records on abattoir operations. Additional information was
collected through questionnaire administered to butchers and
interviews with key informants (veterinary experts and meat
inspectors) using interview schedule. Waste materials generated
from abattoir operations was estimated based on calculations by
Aniebo et al. (2009) (Table 1). The computations were done using
average data on body weight for the respective ruminants and
carcass weight per 1,000 kg.
This study also assumed that volume of waste generated from
the slaughter of sheep is equal to that for goat. The estimated
figures from Aniebo et al. (2009) were therefore applied to sheep.
Quantity of meat produced was also estimated using data (average)
from the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MOFA) (Table 2),
computed from carcass weight and number of livestock
slaughtered.
Meat production (Mt) = (Off take rate (%) × Estimated population
× Carcass weight of animal (kg)/1000. Carcass weight = Average
livestock weight (kg) × (carcass wt%) / 100 (MOFA, 2011). For
purposes of this study however, off take rate × estimated population
stated in the formula was substituted with the observed number of
livestock slaughtered daily at the abattoir.
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
Entry requirements
The butcher industry is clan-related and dominated by
members of the Nakohigu clan (Dagbani) meaning
butchers’ clan. The setup is a form of traditional/political
system controlled by a Chief with various officers who
play different roles as pertains in the traditional clan
system. Butchers who do not belong to the regular clan
but have been initiated and accepted into the business
are in the minority, referred to as Bajobihi. Membership of
the Tamale abattoir is currently made of 13% Bajobihi
16 J. Public Health Epidemiol.
Table 2. Data for estimating meat production.
Livestock
Av. Livestock wt. (kg)
Carcass (% of live animal wt.)
Carcass wt. of animal (kg)
Cattle
250
50
125
Sheep
25
60
15
Goats
22
60
13
Source: MOFA (2011).
Table 3. Meat production at the Tamale abattoir (Mt).
Livestock
Livestock numbers
Av. production/
day
Av. production/
year
% of 2010 production
Cattle
55
6.88
2,475
12.38
Sheep
50
0.75
270
1.60
Goats
20
0.26
93.6
0.49
Estimated using field data, 2013 and Table 2
Figure 1. Composition of ruminants slaughtered daily at the
Sheshegu abattoir.
and 87% Nakohigu. The current composition was
described as a marked improvement of the situation 15 to
20 years earlier. According to one key informant, it was
virtually impossible for individuals who are not members
of the clan to operate as butchers. Traditionally, non-clan
members are made to perform certain initiation rites.
They present two (2) knives and an unspecified amount
of money to the Chief who performs the necessary
rituals. It was popularly believed that any individual
(Nakohigu) who is not interested in becoming a butcher
still have to go through the ritual and occasionally feed
the knives with blood by participating in slaughter
operations. Refusal to comply, according to some key
informants, could result in madness or failure in any
attempted business undertaking.
Meat production and handling at the abattoir
On the average, 125 ruminants were slaughtered daily at
the abattoir. Composition of the respective ruminants
slaughtered daily at the abattoir is represented in Figure
1. Table 3 shows the average (daily and yearly)
estimates (Mt) of the quantity of meat produced. The
results show that annually, 2,475 tons of beef,
representing over 12% of the 2010 national output for
Ghana (MOFA, 2011) came from the abattoir. In addition,
about 1.6 and 0.5% of the 2010 national output of mutton
and chevon, respectively was produced. These results
show that activities at the abattoir contribute significantly
to the total national meat output, providing employment
for a number of people in the metropolis. There are
however, serious concerns regarding the methods
adopted in processing and handling of the meat as well
as management of waste materials.
Waste generation and management
The 55 cattle, 50 sheep and 20 goats slaughtered daily
lead to the generation of about 0.7 ton of blood, 0.5 ton of
gut contents, 0.4 ton of waste tissues and 0.7 tons of
bone. These translate into annual total of 1,159.7 tons of
blood, 822.9 tons of gut contents and 636.5 tons of waste
tissues discharged directly into the environment (Table
4). A total of 1,237.4 tons of bone that would otherwise
have been part of the annual waste generation was
excluded because they are often sold together with the
meat. In other words, between 2005 when the abattoir
was commissioned and 2013, an estimated 8,117,928
tons of blood, 5,760,300 tons of intestinal contents and
4,455,360 tons of waste tissue have been discharged into
the environment. Blood and liquid intestinal fluids are
washed into a drain that empties right at the premises of
the abattoir (Figure 2). The drain only serves as means of
carrying effluent out of the main building. These are
washed by rains into nearby streams and dugouts that
serve as sources of water for other communities. Solid
Fearon et al. 17
Table 4. Waste generation at Sheshegu abattoir.
Waste category
Cattle/day
Goat/day
Sheep/day
Total/day
Total/yr
Blood/Head(kg)
693
14.4
36.0
743.4
1,159,704
Intestinal content/Head(kg)
440
25.0
62.5
527.5
822,900
Waste tissue/Head(kg)
352
16.0
40.0
408.0
636,480
Bone/Head(kg)
649
41.2
103.0
793.2
12,37,392
Source: Field data (2013).
Figure 2. Drain carrying a mixture of blood and intestinal fluid.
Figure 3. Abattoir assistant carting intestinal waste (A) to dumping site (B) close to abattoir.
intestinal contents are collected in wheelbarrows and
deposited at designated points (Figure 3A and B).
The abattoir waste materials are entirely organic that
can either be composted or recycled and used for various
activities, yet they are left to degrade, producing bad
stench. Degrading heaps of gut contents at the site serve
as breeding grounds and sanctuary for pests that
become a nuisance for abattoir workers, visitors as well
as residents around the facility. Bone waste is currently
not a problem because they are often sold together with
the meat.
The abattoir currently lacks basic facilities including
cold storage facility despite the vast potential of the
industry. It appears that the limited facilities provided
have been run down over the years. Although officials of
the veterinary services were seen inspecting meat, many
other health and sanitation concerns have been ignored
by the authorities. Although abattoir waste carries high
levels of microorganisms that may be harmful to humans,
they are an excellent substrate for generating biogas
(Rabah et al., 2010). The study revealed that about
1,159.7 tons of blood, 822.9 tons of intestinal contents
18 J. Public Health Epidemiol.
A
B
Figure 4. Open burning of fur with tyres and firewood (A). Carcass processing on the floor close to a pile of gut
contents (B).
and 636.5 tons of waste tissues are discharged annually.
This volume of waste when properly managed
(composted or digested) will in addition to reducing the
sanitation and health challenges round the facility,
produce other benefits (for example, manure) for farmers
and biogas for home and other uses. It has been
estimated that 1 kg of fresh animal waste produce about
0.03 m3 of gas (methane) per day (FAO, 1996).
Theoretically, about 25,000 m3 of biogas can be
produced annually from the 822.9 tons of gut contents
alone. It is popularly believed that the potential to
generate biogas from abattoir waste is a good opportunity
to enhance their activities (HDR, 2010). In other words, it
could lead to improvements in efficiency and general
approach to meat processing. For instance, if the abattoir
is able to produce biogas for use, there will be reduced
demand for firewood and lorry tyres, consequently saving
some forest resources and the environment.
Meat handling and transportation
Some butchers were cited preparing carcasses on the
wet, dirty floor outside the abattoir and very close to the
heap of waste materials (Figure 4B). Before this stage,
and immediately after animals are slaughtered, the fur is
burnt off in the open using firewood and lorry tyres
(Figure 4). At least five fire points were counted daily over
the period, each producing smoke continuously between
7.30am and 11:00am. It was however observed that
firewood constituted the greater part of the fuel. In other
words, use of lorry tyres was relatively minimal compared
to other places in the country where they constitute the
main energy base (Nyinah, 2002). Apart from the danger
it poses to the health of consumers, the practice also
produce lots of smoke that pollute the area (Figure 3B).
The facility is generally operating under unhygienic
conditions due to lack of certain basic amenities. Since it
was commissioned somewhere in 2005, it has not been
rehabilitated hence most of the facilities have been run
down.
Handling and transportation
There are major problems with the manner in which
animal carcasses are handled during slaughter, loading
and transportation from the abattoir to various points of
sale in the metropolis. There is only one old, wretched
meat van used to transport meat to the markets. Thus,
majority (93%) of the butchers convey their meat on
bicycles, motorbikes (Figure 5A) and motorised tricycles,
popularly known as motor king (Figure 5B), as well as in
booth of taxis under very unhygienic conditions. In most
cases, meat is simply packed and transported without
regard to safety measures. These practices affect the
quality of meat sold on the market, with serious
consequences to the health of consumers. For instance,
Adzitey et al. (2010) in a study to ascertain the quality of
chevon and mutton sold in three major meat shops in the
Tamale metropolis concluded that samples from all the
shops were contaminated with microbes (Streptococcus
spp., Staphylococcus spp., Enterococcus spp.,
Salmonella spp. and Escherichia coli). They indicated
that although the bacterial count for the samples were
below 107 where spoilage occurs (Warriss, 2001), the
presence of certain strains of these bacteria cause food-
borne infections.
Conclusion
Operations at the Tamale abattoir contribute significantly
to meat supply in the municipality. However, there are
serious problems with the conditions under which car-
casses are processed. Carcass handling in the course of
Fearon et al. 19
A
B
Figure 5. Images showing chevon (A) and Beef (B) ready to be transported to the market.
transportation to various retail centres within the
municipality is also poor. But for the wrong approach to
waste management, the volume of effluent generated at
the abattoir is a potential resource that can be utilised to
enhance operations as well as serve other sectors of the
economy. For instance DeCo is a registered Ghanaian
NGO that produce organic fertilizer for small-scale farm-
ers (DeCo, 2011). It operates decentralized composting
plants in the Northern region of Ghana using various
kinds of biodegradable waste materials. Collaboration
between the existing statutory regulatory bodies,
municipal assemblies and major stakeholders (including
DeCo) will help to address some of the pressing
challenges of waste management at the abattoir. There is
also the need for more robust monitoring and sanction
regime (FDB, 2004) by the Veterinary Services as well as
Food and Drugs Authority to ensure that meat processing
and handling conform to the basic health and
environmental standards.
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Assessment of groundwater resource around an abattoir site in Igoba area of Ondo State, southwestern Nigeria has been carried out, within 1.3 km radius from the abattoir site in order to determine the influence of the effluents discharge on quality of groundwater in the area, so as to forestall outbreak of diseases that can endanger human health. Eleven water samples were analyzed for physical, chemical and microbial parameters; and result subjected to spatial and statistical analysis using analysis of variance and Duncan’s multiple range of variance. The obtained parameters mean ± SD are pH (5.5±0.50), turbidity (10±5.9 NTU), temperature (27.75±0.35 °C), conductivity (240±105.99µs/cm), total dissolved solid (158.9±46.8 mg/L), total hardness (92.1±14.2 mg/L), nitrate (7.3±4.3 mg/L), iron (0.24±0.04 mg/L), total alkalinity (14.57±4.87 mg/L), manganese (0.017±0.0079 mg/L), calcium (26.53±8.7 mg/L), magnesium (12.20±8.1 mg/L), chloride (21.86±7.39 mg/L), sodium (14.71±4.85 mg/L), bicarbonate (13.95±4.48 mg/L), nitrite (0.0336±0.0269 mg/L), dissolved oxygen (1.82±0.52 mg/L), chemical oxygen demand (133.1±53.7 mg/L), biological oxygen demand (29.55±10.93 mg/L), total coliform (9.36±6.05 cfu/100ml) and E.coli (0.5090±0.4700 cfu/100ml). The analysis of variance showed that statistically significant difference occurs among the parameters (p<0.05). All the measured parameters are within the standard limits of WHO and FEPA standards except pH, turbidity, BOD, and total coliform for samples collected within 610 m proximate distance from the site. This contamination is strongly aided by topography of the environment, as the discharged effluents/waste water flows westward and southwardly. Subsequently there is need for proper water treatment and environmental sanitation to prevent outbreak of epidemics and infections, while the government should enforce thorough regulations guiding establishment and operation of abattoir in the site if it can’t be relocated.
... The solid waste is mostly made up of bones, condemned parts, paunch contents, hairs, undigested ingesta and in certain instances, aborted fetuses; the liquid part comprises wash wastewater, dissolved solids, urine, blood, and gut contents. Gas wastes are Odors and emissions from the processing and putrefaction of dumped wastes (Fearon et al., 2014). In developing countries, water supply infrastructure is poorly developed, and slaughtering operations require large water quantities; thus, most abattoirs are located next to underground and surface water bodies. ...
... Similarly, the management practice for abattoir waste disposal in Dunukofia Local Government Area in Anambra State is dumping, and such practice have been described to be aesthetically unappealing and environmentally unsustainable, and it renders the meatslaughtered, unwholesome. The numerous wastes produced by abattoir operations not only pose a significant challenge to effective environmental management but also are associated with diminished air quality in the environment, potential transferable antimicrobial resistance patterns, and several infectious agents that are pathogenic to both animals and human (Fearon, et al, 2014). Also, it is worthy to note that many studies have been conducted on the improper management of abattoirs but there is dearth or little information on the adoption of improved management practices among abattoir workers in Dunukofia Local Government Area of Anambra State, Nigeria. ...
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The study assessed the adoption level of improved management practices among abattoir workers in Dunukofia Local Government Area of Anambra State, Nigeria. Multi-stage sampling technique was used in selecting one hundred and twenty (120) respondents that were used in the study. Data were collected through primary source, using a well-structured questionnaire, and data collected were analyzed using frequency, percentage and mean score. The majority (85%) of the abattoir workers were males, 45% fell between the ages of 31 and 40 years while the majority (70%) of the workers were married. A greater proportion (57.50%) attended primary school education, while 60% had a household size of between 6 and 10 persons with a mean household size of 8 persons. The study revealed that slaughtering of animals (x ̅=3.67), emergency slaughter services (x ̅=3.67), unloading of animals (x ̅=3.46), identification of animals (x ̅=3.10), training of butchers (x ̅=3.08), rearing of cattle (x ̅=2.93) and buying and selling of cattle (x ̅=2.63) were the services rendered by the abattoirs in the area. The result shows that the improved management practices adopted by the abattoir workers were safety wears (x ̅=3.56), hand washing facilities (x ̅=3.25), usage of clean water supply during washing of meat (x ̅=2.93), improved state of lairage (x ̅=2.72), efficient odor management methods (x ̅=2.63), ante-mortem inspection (x ̅=2.55), and better heating system (x ̅=2.53). Whereas, improper storage of left over carcass (x ̅=3.56), improper waste management (x ̅=3.23), unclean environment (x ̅=3.22), poor welfare of animals (x ̅=3.08), careless evisceration (x ̅=3.03), usage of tires and plastic materials in flaying animal (x ̅=2.93), outbreak of diseases (x ̅=2.88), washing of meat with unclean water (x ̅=2.83), poor supervisory activities (x ̅=2.77), usage of hormones and chemical (x ̅=2.77), and unclean equipment and tools (x ̅=2.72) were the major unhealthy and unethical management practices that affects meat quality. More so, the result revealed that unbearable taxes and revenue collection (x ̅=3.52), unavailability of sewage tank (x ̅=3.50), inadequate funds for expansion (x ̅=3.30), dissemination of false information about meat on the social media handle (x ̅=3.10), and inadequate veterinary personnel (x ̅=2.91), etc were the major challenges faced by the workers in the area. Based on the findings of the study, it was recommended that government should ensure enforcement of laws and regular supervision of abattoir activities in the state in other to promote safe and healthy meat for consumption.
... Other waste management technologies such as composting, incineration and aerobic treatment can be energy-intensive. These waste streams from the slaughterhouse activities when disposed of in the environment can under natural and uncontrolled anaerobic conditions produce biogas which is directly emitted into the environment [24,16]. Biogas contains varying amounts of gases depending on various factors including type and composition of substrates, with methane as the useful component with respect to energy considerations. ...
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The potential of methane yield depends on the composition of feedstock which is characterized by a diversity of biodegradable fractions. This study aims at constructing and using the novel kinetic model as a tool to predict methane-to-carbon dioxide ratio from slaughterhouse solid waste using hydraulic retention time and temperature as parameters. The slurries prepared were composed of cattle blood, rumen content and requisite nutrient solution which were fed into a continuously stirred tank reactors. The process was monitored at regular intervals of 3 days for a retention time of 54 days for thermostatically controlled temperatures of 35, 37 and 40 °C. The percentage methane and carbon dioxide gas concentrations in the headspace were measured. The phenomenon was idealized with scatter plots and co-efficient of determination used to establish a reasonable correlation between the identified parameters. In this study, simple, robust and reliable kinetic models have been developed using the Microsoft Excel Add-in Solver Tool with the Generalized Reduced Gradient. The optimum solution of seven unknown constants represented by adjusted values where simulated values adequately matched the observed values for the three zones of this study. Validation of the models also showed that the phenomenon can be produced in a continuum at any fixed temperature.
... Rumen digesta produced in slaughterhouses is usually discarded as waste. Fearon et al. (2014) estimated an average daily discharge of 0.6 tons of rumen digesta into the environment from the Tamale Abattoir, Ghana in 2013. This amounts to an average of 219 tons/annum of rumen digesta from a single abattoir. ...
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For years, abattoir solid waste disposal in many developing nations has been a major problem. Many abattoirs in Sub-Saharan Africa especially Nigeria deposit their wastes within the immediate locations or dispose them into water bodies which causes effects to the people living close to abattoirs. On the other hand, locating abattoirs in urban center furnishes many advantages to the people therein. Though, the impact of abattoir practice poses threat to the physical and man-made environment. The aim of this study was to determine the environmental as well as socio-economic effects of location of abattoir to the neighbouring people. A mixed method of quantitative and qualitative approach was employed. A multi-stage sampling technique was used to sample 400, 44 and 44 of respondents living proximity to abattoir, traditional head of butchers (Sarakunan-Pawa) and chairman of butchers’ association respectively. Quantitative data were collected from people neighbouring abattoir. While the qualitative data were derived from in-depth interview conducted to traditional heads of butchers (Sarakunan pawa) and Chairman of butchers’ association. This research used statistical tools, frequency count, bar and pie charts for data analysis and presentation. Findings of this research revealed that more than 25% of people living very close to abattoir do not been disturbed by bad odour produced by the abattoir. It is also revealed that there are both positive and negative effects of abattoir set by locating abattoir in an area, but the negative effects outweigh its positive ones. This research concluded that appropriate planning should be put in place to avoid encroaching by people close to abattoir or establish new abattoir close to residential area. And also proper drainage and modern methods of abattoir solid waste management should be designed
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The microbial quality of 80 meat samples made up of 40 chevon and 40 mutton were collected from the Aboabo, Central-internal, Central-external, and Sakasaka meat shops in Tamale Metropolis and assessed in order to ascertain it safety. Chevon from Aboabo and mutton from the Central market-internal had the highest mean total aerobic bacterial count of 3.9 X 10 6 cfu/cm 2 and 3.7 X 10 6 cfu/cm 2 , respectively. The lowest total aerobic count in chevon was found in the Central-internal (6.0 X 10 5 cfu/cm 2 ) and that of mutton was found in Sakasaka market meat shop (6.0 X 10 5 cfu/cm 2 ). Bacteria isolated from the samples were Escherichia coli, Streptococcus species, Salmonella species , Enterococcus species, and Staphylococcus species, some of which harbor human pathogens of public health concern. The isolation of various bacteria in chevon and mutton sold in the Tamale Metropolis indicates that, lower standard of operating systems in the slaughtering, processing and sale of meats are adhered to. The Government of Ghana, Ministry of Health and Ministry of Food and Agriculture should enforce the laws that prohibit the illegal slaughtering of animals without veterinary inspection, unstandardized methods of handling animals, slaughtering and selling of meats on the open market. @JASEM J. Appl. Sci. Environ. Manage . December, 2010, Vol. 14 (4) 53 - 55
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The biogas production potential of abattoir waste at different retention time was investigated and the bacteria associated with the production as well as the pH of the slurry before and after the biogas production was determined. The result revealed the presence of Bacillus megaterium, Bacillus licheniformis, Bacillus pumilus, Bacillus brovis, Bacillus alvei, Bacillus lentus, Yersinia enterocolitica, Proteus vulgaris, Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Staphylococcus aureus and Salmonella sp from the spent slurry. It also indicated a slight shift from a neutral medium to a slightly acidic environment in all the digesters. The highest volume of biogas (2240cm3) was obtained in week 2 while the least volume (1820cm3) was obtained in week 4.Significant difference (p < 0.05) was observed in the volume of biogas produced in the first and second week as well as to that of third and fourth week. However, no such difference (p < 0.05) was observed in the volume of biogas produced in the third and fourth weeks.
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Data on all the registered slaughter slabs in Rivers State was obtained from the Livestock/Veterinary Department of the State Ministry of Agriculture, Port Harcourt, from 2003 to 2005. Rumueme slaughter slab was used as a case study. The total number of cattle and goats inspected and slaughtered was monitored for a period of 6 weeks. From this the actual average daily slaughter figures from which blood waste potential of the abattoir was quantified and annual projection made from it. Three categories of cattle and goats were sampled and slaughtered. Average blood yield per animal species was determined. The percentage shortfall observed at Rumueme was used across the records of all the slaughter slabs in the State and projections made from it. Results showed that 7727 cattle and 4049 goats were slaughtered annually at Rumueme and 181,770 cattle and 237,300 goats were slaughtered annually in Rivers State. Results also showed that 2461,633–2518,000 kg of blood waste was generated annually in Rivers State. It was observed that, as in most other slaughter slabs in the state, the entire blood and stomach contents were directly discharged into nearby New Calabar River. The action was found to be unhygienic, uneconomical, and dangerous to aquatic life and human health, and above all, counterproductive.
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The problem of getting quality drinking water is increasing as untreated effluents are discharged into surface water bodies. The impact of effluent from Bodija abattoir, the biggest abattoir in Ibadan, western Nigeria on the physico-chemical parameters of Oshunkaye stream was investigated. The qualities of effluent and stream water (before and after mixing with effluent) were studied using the basic water quality parameters. The ranges of the physico-chemical parameters studied were as follows: pH 6.92 – 8.18, temperature 31 – 34°C, total solids 7726 – 47 630 mg/l, total suspended solids 1498 – 6803 mg/l, chemical oxygen demand 947 - 2566 mg/l, oil and grease 2500 –12590 mg/l, nitrate 62 – 159 mg/l, phosphate 142 - 180 mg/l, chloride 1052 – 1727 mg/l, lead 0.08 – 0.2 mg/l, nickel 0.18 – 0.49 mg/l, copper not detected – 0.14 mg/l, zinc 0.67 – 6.08 mg/l and cadmium (not detected). Using Prati’s et al classification of surface water quality, Oshunkaye stream fell in the class of grossly polluted water after mixing with effluent from the abattoir. While before mixing, it fell in class of slightly polluted. Hence the abattoir effluent needs to be treated before discharge into the receiving stream to reduce health hazard.
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Cattle transported to the government-run cattle market and slaughter slab in Akinyele, Oyo State, Nigeria on their final voyage are facing a disturbingly cruel, filthy and unsafe environment that is also raising the risk of contamination of meat sold for human consumption. This report gives a picture of what the cattle have to go through before they are slaughtered. This study also reveals cattle awaiting slaughter in abysmal health conditions, cows pulled with extreme force towards lairage and slaughter slab. Equally disturbing is the filthy situation inside the abattoir where the risk of contamination of meat is significant. Also, poor meat handling, transportation and sales practices subject meat to contamination leading to poor quality and exposure of human consumers to health risk. Development of hygienic slaughter slab operations, improved transportation system for both livestock and meat is therefore recommended; not only for Akinyele, but all abattoirs and slaughter slabs in Nigeria.
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