Meat discoloration sparks controversy a few days after Eid al-Adha

Few days after Eid al-Adha, a Moroccan family claims that their sheep meat was discolored despite the efforts made this year by the National Office of Food Safety. The latter has promised to issue a detailed communiqué on the phenomenon.

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As Moroccans celebrated Eid al-Adha, some of them realized that their sacrificed animals were no longer edible. Speaking to Yabiladi on Sunday, a family in Casablanca said that one day after slaughtering their sheep, they found out that their mutton meat was discolored.

«When my wife wanted to check on the meat, she found out it had turned green and started to smell foul», said the father, who explained that the family made sure to cut the animal and store it on the day of Eid al-Adha.

«My father in law and I bought three sheep from a sheep market in Jemaat Guisser, in the Settat province», he recalled. After slaughtering two of the animals, the man found out that one of them had damaged lungs while the other had multiple cysts in its viscera.

The family decided to throw the parts that looked unhealthy and kept the meat which appeared to be «fresh and red», said the father.

Shocked by the discoloration of their meat, a phenomenon that made headlines last year, the family reached the National Office of Food Safety (ONSSA), which advised them to visit the hygiene services department in Sidi Othmane (Casablanca).

«Once there, we were surprised that we were not the only ones. We gave the people in charge there the number the sheep had in its ear. They took samples from us and threw the rest in their garbage», stated the man.

After filling a document with information related to their purchase and the state of the sheep they slaughtered, the family left the facility empty-handed. «We want to know what is happening», said the mother, arguing that «the government promised to monitor the condition of sheep sold to people ahead of Eid al-Adha».

Other cases in Kenitra

The mother has even voiced her worries, indicating that the family «ate the sheep’s liver, which turned out to be sick and was discolored».

«I am really scared as I breastfeed my two-month-old baby girl and I would be devastated if something happened to her», she concluded.

Reacting to the situation, ONSSA told Yabiladi on Monday that a detailed communiqué will be released soon, giving further information on similar cases and the results of analysis undertaken this year.

Not very far from Casablanca, two other cases of meat discoloration have been revealed in the city of Kenitra. According to French-language online newspaper Le360, two families have declared that their sheep meat turned green, alerting ONSSA about it.

In its response, the National Office of Food Safety declared in a communiqué that the first case is related to the fact that the sheep had water cysts in its lungs while the second had swallowed a «foreign body». It stressed that the infected parts have been removed while the rest was kept and was edible.

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