The Meat Corporation of Namibia (Meatco’s) Windhoek abattoir is currently undergoing maintenance and upgrading, according to Meatco spokesperson Rosa Thobias.
“Meatco’s Operations department has implemented a strategic plan that has been running smoothly so far. In the past two years, infrastructure investments were made at the Windhoek and Okahandja plants. Unfortunately, renovations took longer than expected with the opening and closing periods at the factories causing a delay as well as giving less time to renovate each plant,” Thobias said.
The Windhoek abattoir closed for maintenance and upgrades in August, while the Okahandja plant will be running until the end of the year.
“General maintenance and upgrade projects at the Windhoek abattoir were delayed for about two years as it could not be done during the production period. Also, the de-boning production section has expanded quite extensively over the years and now requires a larger air conditioning system, since the current system cannot cope with the demands of the de-boning production line,” Thobias added.
Furthermore she said that although Meatco had managed to keep the production line going with an average uptime of 98%, the immediate need to replace the system was evident to avoid compromising the quality of Meatco’s meat products.
Meanwhile, due to the increase of cattle slaughtered at both Okahandja and Windhoek abattoirs, there has been quite a bit of expansion at the feedlots and tannery. Thobias said the value addition plant that started last year increased the volumes received as well as production throughput.
“With regards to the maintenance work, replacing the abattoir overhead conveyor chains, bunch conveyor and plates, the refrigerator compressors and air-conditioning are in progress. There is a list of items for repair and upgrade that was created; from there a schedule for maintenance was made. Some of the upgrades can be done while in production, while other larger projects have to wait until production at the abattoir has been shut down,” she added.
“Meatco is becoming a new business as production transforms and the company reinvent itself. Meatco is in the investment phase of its reinvention and the strategies implemented over the past two years have proven to be successful so far,” she said.