Tue | Jan 18, 2022

SRC offering meat processing service to general public

Published:Monday | December 6, 2021 | 10:04 AM
Annaleise Aiken, Team Leader for the Food Pilot Plant at the Scientific Research Council - Contributed photo.

The Christmas season is upon us, and for many people, a dinner table with deliciously prepared meals is on the list for their family and friends.

With that in mind, the Scientific Research Council (SRC) is inviting persons to take advantage of its smoked meat facility.

Through its pilot plant, the entity sells SRC branded meats and also allows persons to submit their own meat for processing for the Christmas season.

Team leader for the SRC's Food Pilot Plant Annaliese Aiken says client submissions are being accepted until Friday, December 10 at midday.

“So we're accepting whole cuts of pork and whole birds, and we're also accepting pork carcasses. If there's any special request from any client for a large amount of meat to be processed, they can call ahead to coordinate that with us. Outside of the Christmas season, we accept meat processing for orders of 200lbs and over,” she said.

Aiken highlights that the SRC's meat processing programme is unique and that it has been certified for Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) recognition by the National Certification Body of Jamaica (NCBJ).

“So what this means is that we have successfully implemented an advanced food safety system around our meat processing activities. Our clients are going to be able to buy our meats with absolute confidence that it was produced with a high level of skills and care. We also have an unmatched flavour that our clients love, we have several return customers that come back every single year, because our ham and our chickens are so tasty”, the team leader explained.

As Aiken highlights, proper manufacturing practices during meat processing is critical to ensure the finished product is safe and of a high quality.

“During the production of smoked meat products or any other meat products for that matter, there are several opportunities for the product safety to be put at risk such as microbial contamination, or cooking at the wrong temperature. So being knowledgeable about the risks during meat processing will allow you to put systems in place to ensure your product is going to be safe every time,” she said.

She adds that when meat is received to be smoked at the pilot plant, it is thawed in a controlled environment to reduce the risk of cross contamination.

“Each meat is individually tagged so the chance of client's meats being mixed up is significantly reduced. What we do in order to process the meat is that we prepare a brine mixture which is skillfully injected into the meat to ensure the flavour penetrates to the bone.

“We allow the meat to sit in the brine solution overnight if it's chicken. If its pork or beef we allow it to go up to 48 hours in the brine and then we cook it in our smoke houses, so what you end up with is a beautifully cooked ham or chicken with the signature smokey taste or flavour. We wrap them up and freeze, when you come to collect you just need to thaw and reheat and its ready to eat,” she shared.

Anyone can drop off their meat to be processed and smoked by the SRC.

The cost for meat processing is $363 per pound including GCT.

The SRC's branded meat products are also on sale while stocks last.

The pilot plant is open from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm Mondays to Fridays and the entity accepts meat until 3:30 pm.

“I would definitely invite everybody to come and get a SRC branded ham or to come and drop off their ham. We're in the peak of it, so drop off soon as possible. Don't wait until the cut-off date because we want to ensure everyone has an amazing ham for Christmas,” Aiken said.

For more information on the SRC's Smoked Meat Programme and to find out more on how you can benefit this holiday season and after, call 876 927-1771-4 or email headsrc@src-jamaica.org

- JIS News

Follow The Gleaner on Twitter and Instagram @JamaicaGleaner and on Facebook @GleanerJamaica. Send us a message on WhatsApp at 1-876-499-0169 or email us at onlinefeedback@gleanerjm.com or editors@gleanerjm.com.