The Australian standard for the hygienic production of meat for human consumption requires 'The discharge of any material from the esophagus, stomach, intestines, rectum, gall bladder, urinary bladder and uterus is prevented.' During procedures, if faecal matter is discharged and contaminates carcasses, the material must be completely trimmed off. Thus the trimming of contaminated carcasses can be greatly reduced if the rectum is sealed securely.
The 'Bung Plug' or 'Bum Dum' prevents leakage of faecal material, for improved carcass hygiene, thus reducing the number of carcasses that have to be retained and trimmed. Developed by Bestaxx and Vert Design it also makes the task of releasing the rectum from the pelvic channel easier and improves the ergonomics of dressing procedures.
The Bung Plug is a remarkable design story. The traditional approach to this problem meant that a high percentage of lambs were wasted and the procedure was very inefficient. The Bung Plug represents the application of professional industrial design in an industry that has not traditionally utilised designers. The result has revolutionised the process and prevents waste. It is an example of excellence in Australian design and received an Australian International Design Award - Best in Category (Medical and Scientific) and the Powerhouse Museum Design Award in 2012.