Home » General » ZIMBABWEAN FARMERS URGED TO EXPLORE NEW MARKETS FOR BEEF

HARARE, Feb 6 — Livestock farmers in Zimbabwe have been urged to consider Russia and China as new export markets for their beef.

Zimbabwe last sold beef to Europe in 2001 before exports were suspended because of an outbreak of foot and mouth disease (FMD) and the European Union (EU) has said the ban would remain in force until a quality commission had certified the origins as well as traceability of the country’s beef.

In a speech read on his behalf at a meeting her Thursday to review Zimbabwe’s agricultural competitiveness programme, Minister of Agriculture, Mechanization and Irrigation Development Dr Joseph Made said the country had potential to export beef to several markets.

“There is also need to promote and develop new markets with countries such as Russia and China. Zimbabwe has a huge potential in its livestock industry to earn huge foreign currency through export of beef,” he said.

“But this requires a concerted effort among smallholder producers, government and the private sector to ensure that the livestock sector becomes competitive again.”

The Zimbabwe Agriculture Competitiveness Programme was a four-year initiative which assists 14 farmers’ organizations to improve their leadership and advocacy skills. It was funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) from 2010.

Made had previsouly been quoted as saying that Russia would dispatch a technical team to Harare to examine export systems and carry out checks before beef could be sold to that country.

Last year, the government announced that the country would soon resume beef exports to the lucrative European market but negotiations to that effect are still underway.

SOURCE: NEW ZIANA

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