The Ministry of Investment Trade and Industry (MITI) says they are in the process of scouting for alternative beef markets, apart from the European Union, for Ngamiland and other zones.
This follows concerns raised by Ngamiland farmers that the Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) in the region had rendered beef exports impossible as they could not export to the EU market.
Reports have since emerged that frequent outbreaks of disease, specifically foot and mouth, in the Ngamiland region had resulted in most farmers suffering severe financial losses, making cattle farming an unprofitable entity.
Following this outcry, Director of International Trade in the Ministry of Investment Trade and Industry Shirley Moncho, moved to ease the farmers’ concerns saying the ministry is scouting for alternative beef markets for zones which are not able to export to the lucrative EU market.
Amongst other things, farmers expressed disappointment over Botswana Meat Commission’s buying price for Ngamiland cattle which they say is lower than any other region in the country. The unamused farmers also advised against exporting unprocessed products, especially fish, saying it undermines job creation in the country.
With regard to livestock-wildlife conflict, the farmers reiterated the need for the government to erect a fence which will separate the two and avoid the spread of diseases.