On farm butchering and slaughtering

4 posts

Member for

2 years 10 months
Last seen: 03/08/2018 - 21:05
Joined: 02/20/2016 - 11:55

On farm butchering and slaughtering

We are looking at starting a small slaughtering and butchering service of beef, lamb, pig, poultry and value added products for sale to the public and am asking what accreditation we need and the legalities that relate to this field. I am a qualified butcher already and will have 2 partners that will be entering the business with me. Would love to get your expert advice on this matter. Thank you Glen Reichle
Last seen: 03/09/2016 - 15:26
Joined: 03/09/2016 - 12:57

Hi Glen,

 

Sorry this isn't so much an asnwer as a question for you. As a butcher have you had any experience slaughtering animals before? We are looking at setting up a free range poultry farm and are keen on the idea of on farm processing. I wasn't sure whether we would have to account for staff carrying out the standard abbatoir operations or whether this is something butchers were happy to do. I do know it is quite a regulated industry. Gets more complicated if there is any intention for the produce to be exported. If I find out more information myself I'll pass it on. (I have a family friend who has worked in the abbatoir industry hopefully I'll know a lot more after talking to him). Thanks, Charlotte.

Last seen: 12/26/2018 - 09:21
Joined: 05/31/2011 - 09:44

Hi Glen,

Welcome to the forum, this is a common question with a complex answer.

I have listed the initial steps below that you need to consider before slaughtering and selling meat in Victoria (each state's requirements seem to vary). Slaughtering and selling meat involves a lengthy process of application for licence, ensuring your facility complies with the construction requirements, developing a quality assurance program and engaging in an auditing company. 

 
Below is a basic outline of the requirements:
- In order to sell the meat you have slaughtered you are required to hold an Abattoir licence.

- Under the Meat Industry Act 1993 all meat processing facilities and meat transport vehicles in Victoria require a licence issued by PrimeSafe in order to operate. Licence applications are made through PrimeSafe Victoria.

- In order to obtain a PrimeSafe licence you need to ensure that your facility complies with the  construction requirements of the appropriate standards prior to submitting an application.

- You are required to also develop a Quality Assurance Program (Food Safety Plan); and implement a Quality Assurance Program (Food Safety Plan).

 
All meat processing facilities are required to put in place a quality assurance program (food safety plan). The program will ensure that company management assumes responsibility for control of the production of safe food. Experience in quality assurance would be necessary to develop this program.
 
The program must consist of the following components:
- Organisational chart
- Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) Plan – identifies, evaluates and controls hazards which are significant for food safety.
- Cleaning program
- Maintenance program
- Pest Control program
- Training program
- Calibration program
- Traceability program
- Recall program
 
Meat Processing Facility: As a condition of licence the licensee must ensure arrangements are made with a contracted Accredited Certification Body for an auditor to be present at the facility within the first seven days of operation. Weekly quality control audits continue until a quality assurance program is implemented.
 
Further information and application forms can be found by clicking here.  
 
As you can see it is very involved and costly process to comply with all the restrictions of slaughtering and selling meat. If you are interested in selling meat (including poultry) at a farmers’ market, you will need to obtain a registration or permit from your local council. Local councils are responsible for the regulatory management of farmers’ markets in Victoria.
 
Charlie
Last seen: 01/01/2019 - 21:45
Joined: 12/27/2018 - 16:38

All of the registered abattoir requirements come with wanting to sell the produce. There's a good business just providing professional butchering services to small farms. The chap we deal with is booked out months ahead, and does well. Main capital is the mobile coolrooms needed to provide full service, but they easily recover their cost in rental. .

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