Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST) and the University of Namibia (Unam) third-year environmental health and sciences students recently completed Meatco’s one-month internship programme.
Meatco’s Manager for Stakeholder Relations and Corporate Communication, Rosa Hamukuaja- Thobias said as part of Meatco and the two universities’ agreement, the corporation has been helping students complete their practicals related to Meatco’s operations.
She said the corporation approves such internships based on the review of the projected outcomes of the courses the students are studying at the different institutions.
“At Meatco we need to review whether what they want to do is in line with the Meatco business or not and more so the industry,” Hamukuaja- Thobias said.
She said during the month-long internship programme students were showed how the Directorate of Veterinary Services does inspections like ante-mortem at the offloading area and post-mortem to ensure the safety of meat for human consumption.
Hamukuaja- Thobias said students were required to apply the knowledge and skills needed to protect the public in matters relating to food safety and hygiene through the Safety Health Environment and Quality Assurance Department.
“They assessed Meatco’s premises and applied knowledge of food safety and quality control measures to ensure that we comply with public health,” she added.
Furthermore, Hamukuaja- Thobias said students also evaluated meat hygiene practices to ensure quality and safety in the processing of meat.
“They had to develop, manage and audit food management programmes, which involved carrying out quality assurance and quality control audits during production using a checklist to verify that we meet the quality management programmes,” she said.
According to Hamukuaja- Thobias, Meatco as a national asset, has a mandate to facilitate this type of training, research and innovation activities for tertiary students to promote and achieve their objectives while contributing to the economic growth of Namibia.
This, she said is an opportunity for students to identify their research topics and engage the company to solve shortcomings or recommend improvements needed in the systems.