In early September, Affco’s Imlay meat processing plant in Whanganui became the first plant to introduce the new ‘Ovine Post-Mortem Inspection’ regime.
The new inspection regime involves company staff, rather than AsureQuality personnel, checking carcases for non-food safety or quality aspects (see Food NZ, December/January 2011). The move came after trials of the new system at the Affco plant proved successful and overseas authorities approved the equivalence of the new inspection regime.. Four other plants – Alliance Smithfield, Silver Fern Farms Pareora, Riverlands Blenheim and Affco Manawatu – are expected to introduce the new system later this year.
AsureQuality meat inspectors will still be onsite to undertake food safety post-mortem inspections on all meat products. Final oversight of the products remains the responsibility of the Ministry of Primary Industries Verification vets on the plant.
This article appeared in Food New Zealand magazine (October/November 2012).