Meatco’s Okahandja cold storage certified top in Africa
Following the conversion of the Okahandja Abattoir into an Export Cold Storage Facility early in the year, Meatco recently said it finalised the needed rules to certify the cold storage facility, turning it fully operational since May, according to the meat processing and marketing entity.
The facility received an AA rating from the British Retail Consortium certification body and is currently the first Cold Storage in Africa rated with such a rating. The audit was conducted on 27 and 28 April on behalf of Kiwa PAI by Deborah Wortelhock from the United Kingdom.
During the audit, Meatco received only three minor non-conformances which led to the Cold Storage receiving an AA rating. The rating amounts to 98% of the overall rating. For any facility to obtain a similar rating, there should be less than five minor non-conformances.
“The certification is also unlocking potential clients for Meatco due to the newly acquired rating. This is mostly attributed to the rating appearing on the BRC Directory Global Standards checker website as an AA certified business,” said Meatco Spokesman, Jethro Kwenani.
The cold storage facility currently provides a local company with storage services, however, with the upcoming peak season, the facility will be utilised for Meatco products only according to Kwenani.
Meatco’s Okahandja Cold Storage is the first business unit in the company to receive this rating, since the abattoirs in Windhoek and Okahandja only received an A rating in the past.
Meatco received yet another rating on the 2 May with an Approval Certification from the Directorate of Veterinary Services (DVS) following an audit.
“It is important for our customers, especially those in the UK, to know that we are serious about what we do and that our product stems from an approved quality system,” Kwenani said.
“With the controls now in place, we can ensure the highest quality product through the complete process – from the slaughtering plant, cold storage, and distribution channels, right to the client. This achievement Jethro said proves that clients both locally and internationally continue to receive a product and service that is of the highest standard,” he added.
Meanwhile, as part of Meatco’s strategy of cost cutting, minimal structural renovations were done to the facility. The abattoir and cutting plant will continue being maintained for future use should cattle numbers increase.