In the Abattoirs Act, 1988 , an abattoir is defined as any premises used for, or in connection with, the slaughter of animals whose meat is intended for human consumption.
Offaly County Council Veterinary Section regulates 5 small throughput slaughterhouses in the county. These abattoirs are EU approved and slaughter locally sourced cattle, sheep and pigs for supply to butchers, wholesalers, retailers, and individual people for deep freeze purposes.
The following work is carried out by Offaly County Council Veterinary Service, to ensure that the highest possible standard of hygiene & welfare exists in these abattoirs
- Approval of small throughput slaughterhouses
- Ante – and post – mortem inspections by qualified veterinary inspectors of every animal slaughtered
- Regular inspections of the slaughterhouses – Hygiene, welfare, waste, labelling & traceability.
- Licensing of slaughter men to carry out slaughter of animals humanely & hygienically.
- Regular sampling at these slaughterhouses. This includes water sampling, meat sampling for chemical residues (including antibiotics, anthelmitics, illegal growth promoters, tranquilisers & heavy metals & hormones) and microbiological sampling of meat. Residue sampling is part of a National Residue Control Plan.