NEW ZEALAND: No surge in 'backyard butchers' – NZFSA
Posted: September 29th, 2010 - 7:24am
Food safety regulators say they haven't seen any surge in illicit "backyard butchers" and over the past 12 months it has had just three complaints directly relating to the sale of home-killed meat.
"This is roughly consistent with previous years," said a spokesman for the New Zealand Food Safety Authority (NZFSA) after the rural butchers' arm of Federated Farmers called for the law to be enforced against black market backyard butchers suspected to be linked to livestock rustling.
Mike Hanson, chairman of the federation's rural butchers section criticised operators he described as untrained cowboys and called for more effort to be put into combating rustlers and backyard black market butchers with which he said they tended to work.
"I have little doubt that rustling, much of it unreported, is linked to organised crime because you need a fairly sophisticated operation," he said.
"The people who actively trade in black market meat are as guilty in my book as the people who steal farm animals," he said. "They need to be caught and punished as well."