The Meat Industry Health & Safety Guidelines have been put together by the Meat Industry Health and Safety Forum (MIHSF). This consists of health and safety managers from major meat processors, the New Zealand Meat Workers Union, the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and the Accident Compensation Corporation. As custodian of the guidelines, the MIA will update them as necessary.
Intended as a common resource for people working in the red meat industry in New Zealand, the 180 page guidelines contain practical advice, responsibilities and sources of further information on health and safety. There are 14 sections covering all sections of the production chain from managing health and safety, high risk activities, yards and stock handling, boning, trimming and packing, through to rendering and emergency management.
The document is designed to be easy to follow, so plant staff – primarily supervisors on processing floors – can understand and use them. They are organised in modules, so staff do not have to read the entire documents, but only the sections specific to their work.
Health and safety work has been on the MIA’s to do list this year. In addition to working on the guidelines, it has been involved in consultation with the Government relating to the establishment of WorkSafe NZ. It is also taking an active interest in proposals for major reform of New Zealand’s workplace health and safety, as it is likely it will have significant impact on members.
The Meat Industry Health & Safety Guidelines can be read on the MIA website www.mia.co.nz/industry_information/hsealth-and-safety-guidelines/index.htm.
This article has appeared in Food NZ magazine (December/January 2013) and is reproduced here with permission.