Prompted following the closure of a key abattoir, the government launched an investigation to determine how to cope with closures in the more remote parts of the country.
The investigation is examining Scottish, the rest of the UK and international practice, potential technology, operating options, costs, biosecurity and regulatory requirements for compliance. It is speaking to various parts of the supply chain to understand views, levels of interest, issues and opportunities as well as how mobile abattoirs could potentially impact on the viability of existing infrastructure.
It is hoped the study will determine “whether or not mobile abattoirs would be viable in Scotland by providing detailed research of all aspects of what would be required, including the impact mobile abattoirs would have on the viability of existing processing facilities and supply chains”.
The survey asks if mobile abattoirs have the potential to provide a small holding, croft or farm with a value added service, by providing private kill and traceable meat products; if there would be customer demand for locally sourced, traceable meat arising from the mobile abattoir and the logistics of using a mobile abattoir.
Brian Menzies of Enscape Consulting, who is conducting the research, said: “The crofting, smallholding and farming community play an important role in providing locally sourced, high quality meat, but we are also aware of the challenges that are faced by the sector overall. We are keen to discuss not only the issues, but potential ideas on how to make mobile abattoirs work. If you are part of this community and have views on this, or are potentially interested in utilising a mobile abattoir, we ask you to get in touch for an informal discussion, and/or to complete a survey. At this stage, we are looking at the extent of the demand for mobile abattoirs in Scotland, rather than any firm commitments.”
To take part in the Scottish mobile abattoir sector survey, click here.