-> 2008 -> Going Local Again - Islay Abattoir ‘Reopens’

Tuesday, 23/Sep/2008

Going Local Again - Islay Abattoir ‘Reopens’

Picture of a brown lamb

Good news from Islay today: After seven years without a local abattoir the new Avonvogie Abattoir on Dunlossit Estate will be open for business tomorrow, Wednesday 24th September 2008. Why does that matter, why does Islay (together with Jura and Colonsay) need its own abattoir? I think there are a number of reasons why this makes sense and should be supported for other communities as well:

Good quality food I believe largely requires to be produced as local as possible. From what I've heard transporting animals over long distances to be slaughtered causes them stress which reduces the quality of the meat. Sending the sheep, cattle and pigs all the way to the mainland to abattoirs which might not even be well equipped to handle some of the special breeds bred and reared on Islay won't help the quality of the otherwise excellent Islay meat.

Picture of some pigs

Authenticity, local provenance, call it whatever you want. More and more people want to know where exactly their food is coming from and want to buy locally produced meat. Avonvogie Abattoir is closely linked to the Meat Islay - ‘Hatched and Despatched on Islay’ initiative, which should help consumers identifying real Islay product. On the other hand it should help the participating farmers as it will probably help to differentiate the Islay produced meat from others.

Last but not least it will provide local job opportunities instead of shipping the work out to the mainland.

The first animal slaughtered at the new abattoir was Matidan of Eorrabus, a prize Suffolk Lamb recently sold at an auction in aid of the Islay & Jura Sick Children's Fund organised by Isobel MacMillan of Eorrabus Farm. The lamb was bought by Bruichladdich distillery in an auction raising £3,000 for the charity (see also Matidan of Eorrabus on the Laddieblog).

I guess all that remains is to wish the new Avonvogie Abattoir a successful future!

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