In an exclusive interaction with Restaurant India, Suhail Quraishi, Founder Director, MM Meat shares his journey of becoming one of the largest meat suppliers in India.
As you claim that you are the largest suppliers of Halal Buffalo meat? From where did you source the meat?
We supply fresh water buffalo’s meat. The water buffalos are first kept in stables wherein they get best quality feed and give milk. Once they stop their supply of milk they are sent for slaughtering. We get them from different villages of Maharashtra, Gujarat, Haryana, Punjab and Uttar Pradesh.
You supply fresh halal and safe meat. Is there any special processing you do at your end to maintain the freshness and hygiene?
We have government approved slaughtering certificate. All the processes and slaughtering are done at Mumbai based government slaughter house, that is our panel and through that only all the imports and exports takes place. The supply to all the five star hotels and fine dine restaurants are processed from there only. We ensure the animal in terms of health, fitness after that only we process further. And to maintain the durability and freshness we have special kind of vacuum packaging through which we can restore the freshness for long period.
You slaughter animals strictly as per the Islamic method of Halal. So who remains your target customer?
India being the second largest exporter of meat is known for its fresh and authentic meat and the best way to maintain is through halal process. We have special people who slaughter the animal through the special procedure of halal. Through halal, whole blood (which is not an edible item) circulated in the body comes out and makes the meat healthy and fit to eat. After the meat gets cool down we do the further processing.
Your supply is direct to five star hotels, catering industry, supermarkets. Can you name some of them?
We supply to almost all the big hotels and restaurants. Our clients from restaurant include; The Yellow chilli, Mainland China, Punjab Grill, Hard rock Cafe and the list goes on. From hotel industry we supply to JW Marriott, Taj group of hotels, Oberoi hotel etc.
Can you Name some international standards through which your company is committed to deliver fresh and authentic products?
We process our meat at Mumbai based government slaughter house. We have APEDA license, ISO certification and such other standards through which we maintain the freshness and authentication. All our processing and operations are done strictly following the government guidelines and standards which ensures the freshness and authentication.
How much has the beef ban in Maharashtra affected your business?
Cow got banned years ago, now government has banned ox-bulls also so the only source left today is water buffalos. This has highly increased the demand of water buffalos in the market which led to the hike in price of meat making the lower and the middle class unable to afford the same. Even beef has also disappeared from the menus of big hotels which has too affected the supply and business.
You also supply Chilled Meat, Frozen Meat, Eggs & Edible Offal’s. Who do you see as your biggest competitor in this segment?
There are many names in this segment. We don’t consider anyone as our competitor. The one who maintains the quality and meets the demand on time rules the market and we focus on these two points only.
In what areas and sectors you want to expand. Or simply tell us about your expansion plan for next 3 years?
We are planning to establish chicken processing plant at a large scale in next 2-3 years where we can slaughter around 2 to 5 thousand chickens per hour and we want to take this at a large scale export business also.
Don’t you think that FSSAI law is too stringent to follow?
We have FSSAI license with us which are now compulsory for supplying any food product. To deal with any hotel or restaurant we have to show that licence and I think it is sometimes difficult to produce.
Tell us something about vacuum packaging of the meat?
In vacuum packaging, the product is placed in a plastic film package made from LD and NYLON by removing the oxygen and then sealing the package which maintains the durability of meat. It can increase the life of meat by around 30 days by keeping it chilled at 0-4 degree and for frozen it should be kept at -18 degree.