BUTUAN CITY, Oct. 21 -- Department of Agriculture Secretary William Dar, in a speech delivered yesterday, Oct. 20, during the opening ceremony of Meat Safety Consciousness Week at the National Meat Inspection Service (NMIS) Salvador H. Escudero Hall, expressed his appreciation to the employees of NMIS for their impressive performance in ensuring meat safety.
"Food Safety, particularly, meat safety is a shared responsibility," Secretary Dar said.
He also emphasized that the NMIS is the first responder whenever meat safety is compromised. "It is during these times that the NMIS must take the opportunity to empower the local government units' capabilities to ensure the safety of meat in their localities," he added.
He encouraged the NMIS to strengthen its partnership with stakeholders. "I acknowledge that you do not have the numbers to fully complement the immensity of your responsibility in ensuring safe meat that is why you have to build a strong partnership with your stakeholders," he furthered.
Secretary Dar also encouraged the NMIS employees that they must put the interest of the public and the country above all else in the performance of their duty. He also reminded them not to besmirch the integrity of NMIS when they deliver their mandated services to the public.
Secretary Dar also commended the NMIS in instituting measures to make sure that meat will reach the market, whether they are sold in physical markets or online, in good condition.
"In this trying time, no matter what difficulty we are in, whether in a pandemic or not, we proceed head-on. We must not be distracted by the difficulties. As part of the government, we are mandated to fulfill our duties and functions as the gatekeeper of safe meat. After all, we have sworn to protect the public against direct and indirect hazards brought by unsafe meat," Secretary Dar emphasized. (Roberta L. Riguer, DA-NMIS/PIA-Caraga)