MULTAN: In a bid to offer handsome returns to cattle farmers and ensure supply of healthy meat to citizens, the Punjab government has decided to revise the prices of beef and mutton according to their quality.
This was said by Punjab Agriculture and Meat Company chairperson Mumtaz Ahmed Khan Manais on Sunday.
He said the prices linked with quality of meat would encourage cattle breeders to focus on nutrition of animals. Similarly, it would also help promote sale of healthy meat in the province, he added.
“Although, the government is trying its best to ensure quality the new idea would surely help improve sale of quality meat,” Mumtaz said.
He maintained that beef was being sold at Rs260 to Rs285 per kilogramme in the province, while the same meat was imported from Canada at high price of about Rs5,000 per kilogramme due to difference of quality.
He said nearly 60% to 70% diseases among citizens were due to consuming unhealthy meat. Mumtaz added the meat should have pH 5.3, lengthy ribs and red colour.
He hailed the provincial chief minister for constructing a slaughterhouse in Lahore that has the capacity of slaughtering 1,500 big animals and 18,000 small animals per day. He stressed the need to pay more focus on livestock sector.
Earlier this year, the authorities had launched a crackdown against traders selling substandard meat. The Punjab Food Authority teams seized large amounts of pork and donkey meat during raids conducted in different areas of Lahore.
Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif also took strict notice of the alleged sale of prohibited meat in the province and ordered indiscriminate action against elements involved in this heinous trade.
The punishment for selling dead or unhygienic meat is one-year rigorous imprisonment or Rs2 million fine.
In 2014, the government launched a SMS-based price information service for the residents of Punjab. This service was launched for all districts of the province and was widely appreciated by the people.
The aim to introduce the SMS-based service was to provide daily updated prices of meat and grocery items to the users.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 10th, 2016.
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