During this Covid epoch eat safe and healthy food

Wednesday July 01 2020

Covid-19 shows the need to ensure the meat we eat is healthy. PHOTO | FILE | NMG


For the best and healthiest meat dishes, livestock should be treated in a humane way according to Victor Yamo, the humane and sustainable agriculture campaign manager at World Animal Protection, an organisation dedicated to ending animal cruelty around the world.

During the recent World Food Safety Day, Dr Yamo — a veterinary surgeon — talked about the correlation between animal welfare and food safety. For the past 25 years, he has worked in the African poultry industry.

“If there is one lesson to be learned from the Covid-19 pandemic, it is that we must ensure that the meat we buy and eat is healthy. That means the animal is treated humanely and is healthy from production to the plate,” he said.

Today there are more than 200 diseases that are known to come from unsafe food. About 600 million people get sick every year from eating bad food; 420,000 people die out of which 40 per cent are children below five years of age.

As the world global population increases, so does the demand for food.



Despite meat sold for food being inspected, research shows an increased use of antibiotics in animal husbandry. These antibiotics play a significant role people and livestock suffering from bacterial-caused diseases and infections.

Today, antibiotic resistance is one of the biggest threats to global health in people and farm animals. Three-quarters of all the antibiotics used in the world are used in farming. Statistics from WAP show that between 40 and 80 per cent of antibiotics used on farm animals are classified as unnecessary or highly questionable.

According to the WAP, this inappropriate use of antibiotics in farming is coming under greater global scrutiny and has led to major fast-food restaurants banning products with antibiotic residues within their supply chain.