Home Article Significance of Ante-mortem Examination in Meat Hygiene

Significance of Ante-mortem Examination in Meat Hygiene

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verkäuferin mit frischem fleisch

Food hygiene, which includes milk hygiene, meat hygiene, poultry hygiene, fish hygiene, egg hygiene and game animal hygiene, is an important component of Veterinary Public Health (Pal, 2008). It is required to maintain safety of foods during production, processing, transportation, distribution, cooking and serving (Pal, and Mahendra 2015). Meat hygiene includes all the operations in order to provide a healthy, clean and wholesome meat to the consumer right from the place it is produced to the point it is marketed (Pal and Mahendra, 2015). Meat inspection, which includes ante-mortem inspection and post-mortem examination, is the practical application of meat hygiene and should be performed throughout the whole process of meat production in order to provide clean, safe and healthy meat to the people so that they may not suffer any foodborne infections (salmonlellosis, campylobacteriosis, listeriosis, tuberculosis, brucellosis, tularaemia) or foodborne intoxications (staphylococcal food poisoning, botulism) (Pal, 2012). Foodborne diseases represent an important global public health concern, which endangers the health of people and lead to socioeconomic costs. These diseases occur in sporadic as well as in epidemic form resulting into high morbidity and mortality. It is estimated that foodborne diseases of multiple etiologies are responsible for about 600 million cases and 420,000 deaths in 2010 worldwide (Pal et al., 2017). Majority of foodborne diseases are considered to be zoonotic as they originate from animal foods such as milk, cheese, ice cream, beef, mutton, pork, poultry meat, fish, and eggs. Some of the emerging foodborne zoonotic pathogens, such as Campylobacter jejuni, Escherchia coli 0157:H7, and Listeria monocytogenese can cause life threatening infections, especially in children, elderly persons, pregnant women and immunocompromised patients.

The ante-mortem inspection is a meticulous veterinary examination of the food animals mainly herbivorous (cattle, buffalo, goat, sheep, camel) before the slaughter by a qualified and well experienced veterinarian. The consumption of contaminated raw meat or inadequately or improperly cooked meat may pose a great risk to human health. The author has seen many cases of Taenia saginata infections in persons who had eaten raw beef. In this context, Pal (2007) in his book on “Zoonoses” mentioned that humans can acquire many zoonotic diseases though the consumption of raw meat.

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