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Licensing and Approval of Abattoirs and Slaughterhouses
Licensing and Approval of Abattoirs and Slaughterhouses

The Division of Abattoir Hygiene and Meat Quality Control ensures veterinary public health controls through the supervision of meat inspection and hygiene maintenace of all export abattoirs and approved municipal and private abattoirs and slaughterhouses. The objective is to ensure that the consumer eats meat and meat products that have been passed fit for human consumption according to the Livestock and Meat Industries Act of 2007 and regulations for red and poultry meat.

The division has two main components, one  focusing on export abattoirs and the other on other slaughterhouses.

The division performs the following other functions:

  • Inspection and approval of abattoirs and slaughterhouses

 All red meat and poultry slaughterhouses and abattoirs in Botswana should be licensed and approved by the Director of veterinary Services.  Licensing and or approval follows inspections of the establishments. This inspection follows a set procedure standardised through checklists and performed by a competent officer of the division. Abattoir fabric, equipment, meat inspectors health records and the actual processes are evaluated. Approved premises which may include cutting and storage plants are then assigned a specific code establishmnet number. They are then considered registered with the veterinary authority. Approved establishment are issued with a certificate/license as evidence. This license expires and is renewable subject to satisfactory inspections results.

  • Certification of meat and meat products for human consumption

By law all meat and meat products should have undergone ante mortem (inspection of live animal) and post mortem (carcase) inspection and passed fit for human consumption before being made available to the consumer. Meat that has gone through this process and and the inspectors passed it fit for human consumption is given a certificate. This procedure is certification. A special mark "PASSED" is placed on such carcases or cuts by the meat inspectors. 

  • Enforcement of the legislation

This is implemented through routine visits and spot checks conducted by the division on approved or licensed establishments. Where shortcomings are identified by the inspectors, recommendations are made with set timeframes for completion. Failure to apply mitigating measures by the operator may lead to revocation of the licence and or other measures as the law stipulates.

  • Training of meat inspectors and providing advice to operators

 The Meat Inspection Training Centre located in Lobatse is responsible for training technicians in  meat inspection. The meat  inspection and slaughter floor operation (meat technology) courses each runs for 24 weeks and accredited to the Botswana Training Authority (Bota).The centre also has a significant intake of international students and offers accomodation.

Basic hygiene practices in meat industry and meat processing techniques short term courses are hle regulary in the year for local operators such as butcheries.

For more information oplease contact:

The Principal

Meat Inspection Training Centre

Private Bag 45

Lobatse, Botswana

Tel: (267) 533 0671

Fax: (267) 533 2259



Export abattoirs

The division provides an independednt meat inspection and certification for meat and meat products and othe rproducts of animal origin derived from these export abattoirs. Three export abattoirs have been approved for export being:

Name Location Establishment No. Products
Botswana Meat Commision Lobatse Est. 1 Beef & beef products
Botswana Meat Commision Francistown Est. 3 Beef & beef products
Botswana Ostrich Company Sebele/ Gaborone Est. 4 Ostich, game, donkey meat and products

Can I buy beef and beef products from export abattoirs?

This is an arrangement between the buyer and the abattoir management. The division can assist (if purchases have been made, to provide a certificate for the movemt of the meat from the abattoir to its destination in Botswana.

In the case of export of the meat from export abattoirs, a veterinary import permit from country the customer intends to send the beef to should be provided before a certificate to export may be issued. Only official veterinarians can certify for export.

What do I need to do before construction of an abattoir?

Abattoirs may require an environmental impact assessment study before construction of the project. More detail may be obtained from the Department of Environmental Affairs. Consideration may include disposal of manure, waste water, condemned materials, insect, rodent and smell control measures.

Abattoirs and slaughterhouses should follow a basic layout as guided by the regulations of red meat and poultry abattoirs. The designs will also be influenced by the throughput anticipated.

How do I get my premises approved and licensed?

Please submit your application for approval/licensing to the Director of Veterinary Services. You will be required to complete a prescribed form. A date wil be set to visit and inspect the premises.

How do I obtain meat inspection services?

Once your establishment is approved a meat inspector wil be assigned to cover your establishmnet. This officer is under the full employment of the Government of Botswana who governs their work conditions.

For more information please contact:

Deputy Director (AH & MQC)

Room 106 MoA HQ

Department of Veterinary Services

P/bag 0032


Tel: (267) 368 9299

Fax: (267) 318 1383

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