Abattoir for light lambs
THE Welsh Meat Company began operating its own abattoir this week, but only for light lambs entered into the governments welfare disposal scheme.
In a joint venture with the previous owners, the 540-member co-operative has re-opened Caerfagu Abattoir at Nantmel in Powys. In just two weeks about £200,000 has been invested in a refurbished slaughter hall and a modern sheep line. But because slaughtered lambs will go to landfill sites for now, only part of it will be used for the stun and bleed operation.
The co-ops directors have reassured farmer investors that building work will continue so the whole set-up can be licensed to kill sheep for human consumption. They anticipate having an export licence by the time the 2002 crop of lambs comes off the farms of mid-Wales.
John Davies, a director who farms 20 miles from the plant, says it makes sense to have a fairly high capacity slaughtering facility in the area with the greatest concentration of sheep in the UK. *