If you are squeamish, look away now.

  This will not be the post for you. Just look at the lovely omby with the heart on his head, and we’ll meet again on the next post.  

If, however, bacon, abbatoirs and meat inspection are of interest, read on my friend. This will not disappoint. 

I got up at an unearthly hour last week and went with Dr. Rivo on her meat inspection/abbatoir rounds. I’m not going to lie to you, I didn’t have high hopes for meat quality assurance scheme adherence, but I was pleasantly surprised!

As part of our degree as vets, we do quite a bit of public health and parasitology-but unless you’re working outside the EU you normally won’t see the more spectacular presentations! The main thing to worry about here is cysticercosis, which is down to the encysted larvae of the pig tapeworm taenia solium. I’ll spare you the details-suffice to say you don’t want these in your Sunday roast! 

  
Above- pig carcass inspection. Note onlookers and ever-present dog. Yes, it’s in a wheelbarrow, but the vet is extremely thorough and only meat which is stamped by her as safe can be sold in the main market. Oh, and nothing you do here goes unobserved by passers by!

The actual abbatoir looks like this (brace yourself) :  

 
Note smiling man gleefully sharpening machete on the right hand side. Grim. 

Once again however, extremely well organised; documentation present and correct; methodical practice; police presence (there’s a lot of lads with a lot of weapons in a confined space, not a bad idea at all) and sparkly clean whites for the vet to wear. Anything remotely unhealthy is cut off and condemned, and the vet has the final word. This all results in… 

  
A veritable smorgasbord of omby delights ready for the market by 6.45am every morning. Overall, very impressive. Due to the quality of meat inspection, we’ve started to make our own bacon (a labour of love but arguably worth it) which has improved the menu significantly!

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