Governorate shuts down Beirut slaughterhouse
New list of violating food, water, and beauty companies
Several new actions were taken regarding food safety. The Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) announced a new list of violating slaughterhouses and supermarkets, adding water companies and beauty clinics. Beirut Governor Ziad Chebib has shut down the Beirut slaughterhouse until it is brought back up to code. MoPH revealed that two new slaughterhouses in Ghazieh and Aqbieh would also be closed.
The decision to close the Beirut slaughterhouse was taken due to the discovery of hazardous violations, and because operational procedures did not comply with the MPH’s required standards and norms. Several international organizations have denounced the way animals were treated and working practices in the Beirut slaughterhouse.
The governor has asked the slaughterhouse and the engineering authority of the municipality of Beirut to propose new locations for building a new and modern slaughterhouse. Walid Jumblatt Parliament Member and Head of the Parliamentary Block said that a new slaughterhouse would be built in the same location away from the political pressure facing Former Prime Minister Saad Hariri.
Maarouf Bekdache, Chairman of the Syndicate of Butchers Union and Livestock Traders, said that a new quality assurance workshop will start today and is expected to be finalized within ten days, before in the reopening of the slaughterhouse. He said that the Cabinet will take a decision tomorrow to build the new slaughterhouse in Qarantina. Bekdache said that traders will fulfill their market needs through other small slaughterhouses in Beirut until the slaughterhouse is brought back up to code.
Minister of Public Health Wael Abou Faour said that rehabilitation works should not be limited in painting the walls and cleaning the location, but the slaughterhouse should comply with the food safety standards.
The Council for Development and Reconstruction conducted a study, 12 years ago, on building a modern slaughterhouse in Qarantina, to serve the needs of Beirut and its suburbs. Bekdache said that the location, funds and studies are available to build this slaughterhouse but there is political conflict regarding it. He said that rehabilitating the slaughterhouses would take a lot of time and money.
MoPH also announced a new list of violating butcher shops and supermarkets in Saida, Bint Jbeil, Bourj Hamoud, Kousba, Jezzine, Zgharta, Beirut, Hasbaya, Rachaya, Metn, Minyeh, Baalback, Baabda, Batroun, and Koura. The ministry said that a new list for Hasbaya will soon be announced.
MoPH said that more than 1,000 cases of food poisoning were studied in the previous eight months, due to the violations in food institutions.
The Ministry revealed that part of the water from public sources is contaminated, due to corroded networks. Minister of Public Health Wael Abou Faour said that more than 800 water companies are working without licenses. Tests for these companies showed that more than 90 percent of this water includes sewage water.
The MoPH announced that it will test the licensed water companies, in the coming weeks.
MoPH listed the companies that do not have licenses. It also listed the companies that do not comply with the required norms and standards.
MoPH announced that it will shut down a number of beauty clinics even though they do not fall under the MPH’s jurisdiction.
Date Posted: Nov 19, 2014