The Effect of Usage of Tyres for Dehairing of Goat Meat on Health and Environment

The Effect of Usage of Tyres for Dehairing of Goat Meat on Health and Environment
The Effect of Usage of Tyres for Dehairing of Goat Meat on Health and Environment



1.1 Background to the Study

Meats are important for human diet in many parts of the world because they contribute to solve the global food problem and provide the well-known proteins, minerals and vitamins and trace element (Amani & Lamia, 2012). Animal proteins have a high biological value, and the presence of essential amino acids in them makes them complete protein for this reason, they are mostly the preferred choice of protein for most individuals. Sources are mainly from cow, pork, sheep, and goat. When these animals feed on plants, they take up nutrients from the soil and unfortunately they also absorb some hazardous chemicals that are introduced into the environment (Dubey, Mamta & Archna, 2016). A study by Sabir et al., (2013) showed that higher levels of metals have been indicated in mutton and beef, as cattle graze on contaminated soil. These heavy metals could also get into the meat of animals via the processing method used in slaughter houses and abattoirs. These methods range from the method of dehairing to the method of butchering.

The Effect of Usage of Tyres for Dehairing of Goat Meat on Health and Environment

The act of burning off fur from animal carcass with open flame is practiced in most African countries. In Nigeria, firewood is mainly used as fuel for singeing, but the cost of firewood in current times has mandated local butchers in abattoirs to use scrap tyres in its place (Obiri-Danso, Hogarh & Antwi-Agyei 2008). This preferred choice, according to the local butchers is affordable and more efficient, produces more flame with less heat, and is also able to selectively burn off the fur from the animal carcass (Adam Okyere & Teye 2013).). Although in Minna, Niger state, this practice has also been observed but some processing points still prefer the old practice of singeing with fire wood which they presume to be safe. Unfortunately, when these materials (firewood and scrap tyre) are used for singeing, they may have the potency to contaminate the hides as well as the meat of the animal with heavy metals rendering it toxic for human consumption. Since these heavy metals are not biodegradable, they bioaccumulate in biological tissues and may become cancinogenic, nephro and neuro toxic and eventually result to death when consumed over a long period of time.

In view of the fact that tyres contain many potentially harmful substances, singed treatment with scrap tyres imposes enormous risk of deposition of toxic elements and compounds into the animal hide, which could significantly compromise goat meat quality (Kurt, 2013). Furthermore, tyre being non-biodegradable combustible material, when burnt under open and uncontrolled fire conditions as low temperatures produces black plumes of smoke as well as toxic volatilization products such as soot, which become incorporated into the ambient environment and causes air and water pollution as well as result in human and environmental hazard (FAO, 2015). In addition, large amounts of greenhouse gases are released into the atmosphere. Dioxin does not breakdown; it accumulates in the fatty tissues of animals and humans that consume the contaminated vegetation, goat meats, chickens and dairy products. In humans, these Dioxins can lead to productive impairments, development of injuries and an increase in the risk of diabetes (Leita and Enne, 2011).

According to Essumang (2012), the risk of heavy metal contamination in goat meat therefore is of great concern for both food safety and human health because of the toxic nature of these metals at relatively minute concentrations. In this case, continuous consumption of such potentially contaminated goat meat product poses a great source of health risk. The environmental pollution caused by the burning of tyres is a matter of great concern worldwide, and consequently contamination of the food chain is getting increasingly important in view of its role in human health and nutrition. As such, there is need to curb this menace (Mohammad and Seyyed, 2012).


The Effect of Usage of Tyres for Dehairing of Goat Meat on Health and Environment

1.2     Statement of the Problem

The growing population and incomes, along with changing food preferences are increasing the demand for livestock products (FAO, 2015). In Nigeria, dehairing practices predominantly used in the processing of slaughtered livestock include, the use of fire fueled by scrap tyres, firewood or liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) to remove animal fur.

In Nigeria, despite the efforts of the Food and Drugs Agency which provides guidelines for the regulation of livestock products and also the presence of bye-laws in all Metropolis, to govern the production of goat meat in their respective slaughter houses, unhealthy practices such as animal dehairing with vehicle scrap tyres, is still being exploited as a goat meat processing technique. In the light of the above, the researcher is motivated to conduct a study on the health implication of dehairing goat meat with automobile tyres.

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