Foot-and-Mouth Scare Hits Meat Sales in Qatar
Qatar's admission of suspected foot-and-mouth cases among the livestock of a private farm has resulted in a slump in the sales of meat products, reported the Gulf Times newspaper on Wednesday.
Supermarkets contacted said there had been a drastic fall in meat sales over the last two weeks. Fish sales, however, gone up, according to vendors.
The manager of a cooperative society said frozen meat had been preferred to frozen fish by many customers until a few weeks ago, but the situation had changed since the FMD scare in Qatar.
"A lot of customers now shun meat, even if the stuff has been imported from FMD-free places such as Australia and New Zealand. They demand frozen fish now," he said.
Syed Fazal Shah, head of the department of preventive medicine, insisted that processed dairy products were safe for consumption.
"Only raw milk must be avoided. Not only FMD, another fatal disease, brucellosis, can also be contracted from the infected animals," he told Gulf Times.
Another senior official of the Ministry of Public Health said: "I do not wish to make any statement to the press at this point of time. The revelation had come from the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Agriculture. It is another ministry and a very responsible one at that."
But he said the Ministry of Public Health did not have any information on the FMD cases in Qatar.
In London, officials said Wednesday they were investigating three suspected cases of foot-and-mouth disease in humans, one of which may have been caused when a slaughterman was sprayed with the entrails from a rotting carcass – Albawaba.com
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