Argentina - Beef Industry
QCONZ was approached to provide a methodology which would assist Santa Fe Province to differentiate its beef products from those of other States in Argentina.
This approach came from the Minister of Agriculture for the Provence and was to run over a 2-3 year period. The scope changed throughout the period of the project but it was completed successfully.
QCONZ proposed to develop, in partnership with the Ministry and a local Agricultural University, a simple animal welfare quality assurance system that would operate in the supply chain from producer, to Sale Yard Facility and on through animal transportation to the sale yard and then to the slaughtering facility. The quality assurance system was to focus on animal welfare and any risk factors associated with animal welfare that could affect beef quality.
Simple codes of practice were devised based on feedback from industry personnel. These were used to outline procedures that needed to be followed and risks that needed to be managed.
At farm level –
- illegal or improper use of veterinary chemicals, sprays and growth hormones
- nutrition and feed management
- animal management
- structures and facilities
At animal transportation/sale yard level –
- safe stock handling and animal welfare
- animal movement and controls
- sale document management
These codes were supplemented with focused record keeping systems.
Advisers and appropriate industry personnel were trained in these systems and they were implemented with trial farms, transportation companies and sale yards. The programme was eventually called Carne de Santa Fe. The audit process used hazard analysis principals as a means of rating issues that were uncovered and then allowing priorities to be set in terms of addressing those issues successfully.
Eventually the programme was abandoned due to lack of funding and lack of continuity with key personnel in the Ministry. At the same time however, a large Co-operative, Guillermo Lehmann Cooperativa approached us to deliver a similar programme for them as a means of improving their ability to compete for beef supply quota.
The Santa Fe programme was amended and successfully rolled out at Guillermo Lehmann managed sale yards and within the animal transportation sector. This roll out was successful in that sale yard systems improved dramatically and Guillermo Lehmann reported an improvement in quality through reduced levels of injury to animals supplied to slaughtering facilities.
QCONZ trained an auditor for Guillermo Lehmann and handed the programme over to them to operate independently.