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P150-million ‘AAA’ slaughterhouse to rise in Bulacan

The Department of Agriculture (DA) is hoping to start the construction of a P150-million “AAA” slaughterhouse in Balagtas, Bulacan, before the end of the year.

The Livestock Development Council (LDC), an attached agency of the DA, said negotiation between the local government unit (LGU) and the DA is now in its final stages.

“After months of negotiations, we are currently in the process of finalizing the memorandum of agreement [MOA] with the local government, headed by Mayor Romeo Castro,” LDC Executive Director Manuel Jarmin said.

Jarmin said under the MOA being drafted, the national government, through the DA, will own the slaughterhouse, including all necessary equipment, while the local government of Balagtas will serve as host.

The local government will also work on all necessary documents and permits for its construction.

Jarmin said a producers’ group will be in charge of the abattoir’s operation as the facility would need the expertise and experience of those from the livestock industry.

He also noted that the needed capitalization for the envisioned abattoir is big, and that it would be difficult to expect the private sector to invest in it.

The LDC official expects the bidding for the abbatoir’s construction to be completed by October.

“Based on the feasibility study, the return on investment [ROI] for the slaughterhouse will be 12 percent of its cost after five years of operation,” said Jarmin.

He said the ROI may not be huge but the primary concern of the government is to put up a modern slaughterhouse that would respond to the need of the domestic market for safe and clean meat products.

“The construction of the triple A slaughterhouse will also ensure our capacity to compete with our neighbors from Asean come 2015,” Jarmin said.

The complex will be capable of processing 250 hogs per hour, but the length of its operation in a given day will depend on available hogs for slaughter.

The DA had initially targeted the construction of at least five “AAA” slaughterhouses in selected areas in Luzon in 2011.

The project had to be put on hold after LGUs units initially chosen as hosts supposedly failed to meet project requirements.

The National Meat Inspection Service classifies slaughterhouses as “AAA,” “AA” and “A.” Meat from “AAA” abattoirs is generally regarded as being of the highest quality and could be exported.

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