Report says supermarkets selling antibiotics laden meat

Kenyan consumers could be eating contaminated meat from the country’s major supermarkets.

This is according to a study by World Animal Protection which is challenging stakeholders to improve animal welfare and ensure responsible use of antibiotics to reverse the trend.

The study by the animal rights lobby, collected samples from different supermarkets in Nairobi, Nakuru, Uasin Gishu, Kisumu, Laikipia and Nyeri to determine presence of drug resistant bacteria.

Out of the a 187 pork samples, 98.4 percent had bacterial growth. In 206 chicken samples, 96.6 percent exhibited bacterial growth.

“Some of these organisms might not cause disease in humans, but if you have salmonella, then there is possibility of contamination Of critical importance is that the disease they cause affects old and young people and sometimes can lead to death at a certain level,” said Dr. Victor Yamo, Campaign Manager, World Animal Protection.

The report showed there is a direct correlation between how animals are treated and the quality of the end product. Dr. Yamo noted that misuse of antibiotics in the food chain is impacting on public health.

“We need to understand the interconnectivity of all this. For example when people learn there is a problem with meat, they start buying mboga, yet it is this mboga that is used as feeds by some for the animals… In another 8 years we will be doubling what we consume in terms of antibiotics and that is a worrying trend,” added Dr. Yamo.

Interesting to note, the highest contamination was found in own brands managed by the supermarkets.

It is against this backdrop that the organisation is urging industry players to improve animal welfare practices and ensure antibiotics are not abused.

They also want consumers to be keen by supporting higher welfare production.

“Supermarkets should start looking at policies around how they buy food supplies. They need audit and ensure the producer is doing the right thing at the production level,” observes Dr. Yamo

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