Orkney Islands Council
Working together for a better Orkney
Local abattoir service set to resume next week
29 May 2012

A consortium of local butchers will begin a once-a-week abattoir service at Orkney Islands Council’s Hatston facility next week.

The consortium, Orkney Meat Processors Ltd, has been supported in getting the new service up and running by a taskforce involving the Council, Highlands and Islands Enterprise and the Scottish Government.

The Food Standards Agency and SAOS, the umbrella organisation for Scottish farming and food co-operatives, also provided help and support.

OIC Convener, Councillor Steven Heddle, said: “All involved have been actively seeking ways to maintain a locally-based abattoir service – something seen as vital for Orkney’s food and farming sectors.

“Working together we were all committed to finding a way forward and I’m pleased we’ve been able to support the efforts of the local butchers in finding this interim solution. In providing a once-a-week operation at the Hatston facility, the consortium will ensure that Orkney Beef and Orkney Lamb continue to be available from local outlets.

“Getting to this stage has involved a great deal of hard work by everyone involved and it means we now have time to explore the longer term options with potential service providers for a more permanent abattoir or meat business based in Orkney.”

The consortium intends to use the Hatston abattoir on Tuesday each week, starting on June 5, to process locally sourced beef, lamb and pork.

Ali Flett, from Orkney Meat Processors Ltd, said: “I can’t stress enough the importance of the support we’ve received from the Council and the other members of the taskforce.

“They’ve done everything they could to help make this work and we’re now looking forward to using the facilities at Hatston for the first time next week. The key thing is ensuring that Orkney Beef and Orkney Lamb remain available in the islands, along with locally produced pork.”