What are we burying in our stomachs?!

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Al-Madinah newspaper

Saudi Arabia is a meat-loving nation. The country ranks high on the list of meat importing countries, a list, which includes the importation of cattle, sheep, camels and poultry. So, I cannot help but wonder about the quality of our food security. Food security does not mean the availability of meat, but rather the availability of meat of good quality.

Anyone who has seen the viral videos of food inspectors confiscating food deemed unfit for consumption at restaurants, warehouses and other locations cannot help but wonder about the quality of the meat we are consuming. The question on everyone’s mind is: “Are we really burying in our stomachs animals that were sick in their lives and thus unfit for human consumption?”

There is no need to get into stomach-churning details about the low quality of imported meat you find in the country. Our situation is similar to the people of Troy in the tale of the Trojan Horse. In Greek mythology, during the Trojan War the Greeks constructed a huge wooden horse and hid an elite group of soldiers inside. The Greeks then pretended to sail away and the Trojans pulled the horse into Troy as a victory trophy. At night, the soldiers came out of the horse and opened the city’s gates to the invading Greek army which promptly destroyed the city.

This is the situation with some of our restaurants; they offer us poor and cheap meat with a delicious and eye-catching presentation to serve as a temptation. But after this food enters our digestive systems, the night attack begins!

As we begin implementing Vision 2030, we need to look at the quality of meat we consume and our food security. We do not lack money, land, or resources to create local models for great meat quality production that can replace imported meat. And please, let us eat and enjoy halal and good quality meat, because I swear to Allah we have become a destination for consuming imported meat of dubious quality.


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