Larder hygiene


The aim of this guide is to provide practical guidance on how to achieve a hygienic environment within which to larder carcasses. This guide also provides advice on the disposal of waste arising from carcass preparation.


Hygiene and cleaning

Basic hygiene principles should be applied to working in the larder.* In particular you should:

  • Identify points in the lardering procedure that are critical to ensuring food safety;
  • Implement effective control and monitoring procedures at these points;
  • Review these procedures as required.1

Cleaning between carcasses (should take place before and after carcass processing)

  • Ensure that the larder floor and ‘in-use’ knives and scabbards are visibly clean between dressing each carcass where batch processing.

Examples of acceptable cleansing options for knives, saws and scabbards include:

  • Immersion in water at 82ºC;
  • Ultra violet light cabinets;
  • Steri-wipes.
  • Do not allow blood, waste material and hair to build up on other equipment as you process carcasses.
  • Place waste removed during lardering, including heads and legs, in impervious containers with well fitting lids. Mark these containers “Not fit for Human Consumption”. Empty and disinfect these containers regularly.

Cleaning at end of session

  • Hose down walls, floors and equipment.
  • Use fat-dissolving food-approved detergents and disinfectants approved for use in the food industry.
  • Thoroughly clean and disinfect knives, saws and all protective equipment such as aprons and chain mail gloves.

Weekly cleaning

Larder areas should be empty of all carcasses.

  • As above but ensure that in addition all nooks and crevices are disinfected and hosed down with a low pressure hose.
  • Disinfect all equipment.
  • Empty and disinfect all drainage traps.
  • Disinfect and wash down the outside concrete aprons.
  • Ensure there is no waste material on hoist chains.
  • The level of record keeping should be directly linked to the scale of the processing operation however cleaning records should be maintained.

Personal hygiene

  • Wash hands, before lardering each carcass or after touching contaminated meat.
  • Wear clean, washable, light-coloured, protective over-clothing such as an apron.
  • Cover any wound with a clean waterproof plaster or wear disposable gloves.
  • Wash down and disinfect footwear before entering the larder.
  • Do not dress carcasses or enter the larder If suffering from food poisoning, septic lesions that can not be covered, or any other disease likely to be transmitted to the carcass.
  • Remain aware of the need to maintain high standards of personal hygiene throughout the whole process. Do not eat, drink or smoke in the larder.

General disposal options

This guidance relates to disposal of waste from larders only, not from Approved Game Handling Establishments (AGHE)

  • Dispose of waste from larders is in a manner that minimises the risks to the environment and is in accordance with legislative requirements (see box below).
  • When disposing of waste ensure you do not pollute the environment, or cause harm to human or animal health.
  • There may be a high risk of contaminating private drinking water with harmful micro-organisms.
  • Disposal of wild animals not suspected of being infected with diseases harmful to humans or animals falls outside the regulations2.

The table below summarises options for safe disposal.

Although not required by the Animal By-Products Regulation, there are three disposal routes that are approved and could be considered:

  • Rendering plant or knackers yard;
  • Incineration;
  • Landfill.


Where the above disposal routes are not an option then bury in compliance with the following terms of the Code of Good Practice for the Prevention of Environmental Pollution from Agricultural Activity:
No burial should take place:

  • Within 20 metres of a watercourse;
  • Within 10 metres of a field drain;
  • Within 250 metres from any well, spring or borehole used as source of drinking water;
  • On waterlogged sites.

Burial should only take place if:

  • At least 1 metre of subsoil is present below the bottom of the burial pit;
  • At least 1 metre of covering soil is used to cap the site.

If a burial pit is used, fence the area, and cover each item/load with soil, so as to avoid access for flies/birds etc.
Seek advice from SEPA if there are any difficulties meeting the above criteria.

MaterialDisposalLegislationEnforcing Body
Gralloch & Blood i) Cut gralloch open to expose contents. In areas of frequent use by the public, bury or remove
ii) Do not leave gralloch within 20 metres of water-course
iii) Do not bleed directly into a watercourse
Water Environment (Controlled Activities)(Scotland) Regulations 2011 SEPA
Carcasses resulting from natural death In areas of frequent use by the public, bury in-situ or extract and dispose of either by licensed route or burial None
Carcasses resulting from humane dispatch or culling for management In areas of frequent use by the public, bury in-situ or extract and dispose of either by licensed route or burial. In areas where the carcass is left in situ, ensure that it is not within 20 metres of any water course None
Solid organic waste from larder i) Store in covered, leak-proof, containers allowing for easy cleaning.
ii) Dispose of by burial.
iii) Do not contaminate groundwater
Water Environment (Controlled Activities)(Scotland) Regulations 2011 SEPA
Liquid organic waste from larder (in order of preference)i) Drain into public sewage system, with the consent to do so from your local sewerage undertaker.
ii) Drain into soakaway, avoiding contamination of groundwater - obtain advice and an authorisation from SEPA;
iii) Do not discharge directly into a watercourse without having first obtained advice and an authorisation from SEPA
Water Environment (Controlled Activities)(Scotland) Regulations 2011SEPA