Standard requirements for meat, fish, shell, poultry shops eyed

BAGUIO CITY – (10 February 2021) – The City Council, during last Monday’s regular session, approved on first reading a proposed ordinance adopting standard requirements for the meat, fish, shell and poultry shops in the city.

Local legislators stated that the measure shall adopt the implementing rules and regulations of Republic Act (RA) 10611 which is known as the Food Safety Act and that all meat vendors and dealers shall comply with the standard requirements in the vending of meat in the city whether it is in the city market, the satellite market, retail stores and supermarkets and other vending modalities.

Under the proposed ordinance, meat, fish, and poultry shops shall be located based on allowed zones pursuant to the city’s zoning ordinance; the aforesaid shops shall be located at least 50 meters from schools, religious institutions, public offices, funeral establishments and other public gathering spaces; the shops should be easily accessible to the public through walking or vehicular access; meat, fish, and poultry shops shall not be located in areas subject to flooding and that water and power services shall be available.

The council added that the minimum area of a shop shall comply with the approved width dimensions as recommended by the City Planning and Development Office while floors should be constructed of impervious materials and of such construction and finish to make it easy and thoroughly cleaned and disinfected where all floors shall be kept clean and preferably dry at all times.

Further, interior walls and partitions shall be of impervious and non-toxic materials that are easily cleaned and disinfected and built to a highest of not less than 1.22 meters from the floor while partitions shall not extend up to the ceiling to facilitate circulation or free movement off air.

According to the council, there should be separate display areas for fish, meat and poultry while display tables and counters for fish, shellfish, poultry, meat and entrails shall be provided with adequate and approved table drain and that the same shall be made of entirely open beneath 75 centimeters in height without drawers and shall be made and kept smooth and clean where each having a minimum area of 0.74 square meters of open space shall be provided per customer and celling must be light colored and free of ledges.

Moreover, meat, fish and poultry shops shall be provided at least 2 covered refuse receptacles lined with green-colored plastic bag for biodegradable waste and another receptacle lined with black-colored plastic bag for non-biodegradable waste where all receptacles or refuse bins shall be provided with tight fitting lids or covers so constructed and maintained vermin-proof and easily cleaned.

The council emphasized that any penalty and fine imposed by various ordinances on food safety, the city’s Environment code, zoning ordinance and other related ordinances shall apply for the aforesaid purpose

The council tasked the City Permits and Licensing Division of the City Mayor’s Office, the City Market Office, the City Veterinary and Agriculture Office (CVAO) and the City Planning and Development Office to implement the related provisions of the measure. – Dexter A. See