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Gov’t raises alarm over safety of privately slaughtered chickens sold in city

The Directorate of Veterinary Services has raised concern over chicken being slaughtered by individuals and then sold in Nairobi Central Business District (CBD), estates, and major towns in the country.

The directorate of VS said in a statement that most of the meat sold and consumed in food outlets was not inspected by health officials.

It further indicated that chickens are now being slaughtered at people’s homesteads instead of slaughterhouses as required by law and transported to outlets contrary to stipulated safety requirements.

The director of the department, Dr Obadiah Njagi, said most of the meat sold in food outlets had not been inspected by health officials.

“This meat is mainly sourced from the broiler chicken farmers who slaughter the chickens in their backyards and transport the meat to the hotels and other eateries,” read part of the letter.

According to Dr Njagi, most of the outlets that receive the chickens were fast food outlets in the CBD and other cities across the country.

He added that several abattoirs in the country have also been sourcing chicken directly from farmers.

“This is contrary to the Meat Control Act Cap 356 of the laws of Kenya which states that food animals shall only be slaughtered in licensed slaughterhouses under the supervision of an inspecting officer,” he said.

The Directorate advised county inspectors to supervise the practice as it was rampant and put Kenyans at risk while at the same time, also warning that action would be taken against traders found in breach of the regulations.

Dr Njagi said such malpractices expose the consumer to unhygienic meat and meat products which act as the source of spread of harmful microorganisms, medicine residues, and other contaminants thereby endangering their health.

He advised Kenyans to be cautious of the outlets where they buy chicken, given the recent alarming developments.

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