After a hard hitting drought, the National 2015 livestock census still recorded a population of 1, 480 932 cattle in the Northern Communal Areas (NCA).
The census which was compiled by the Directorate of Veterinary Services indicates that the National Head count of cattle is over N$2.7 million in value.
The Epupa and Sesfontien settlements also recorded 1,289 614 cattle in the southern part of the Veterinary Corridor Fence (VCF).
Desmond Cloete spokesperson of Meat Board of Namibia (MBN), noted that the board has been facing challenges regarding exports as farmers are destocking cattle due to the drought situation in the country and the government destocking scheme which in turn drives cattle prices down as there is an oversupply in the market at auctioning facilities.
“Due to the drought farmers are forced to sell their cattle before they succumbed to the drought creating oversupply in the market. This oversupply leads to a severe reduction in auction price,” Cloete said.
He added, that the MBN also experienced increased exports due to the drought as part of government’s destocking scheme. Producers are incentives to destock through Livestock market incentives implemented by the government through the Ministry of Agriculture Water and Forestry (MAWF).
For each cattle sold the producers received an incentive valued at N$400 and each small livestock N$80, The Villager understands.
According to the statistics provided by the MBN on the performance of meat industry in 2015 MBN recorded compared to 49 694 cattle slaughtered form this year to date.
The number of cattle slaughtered at local butcheries increased opposed to 21 598 in 2014 to 22 367 in 2015, only 12 779 cattle had bees slaughtered since January to date this year.
Statistics indicate that no cattle had been slaughtered in NCA due to Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD).
602 926 kilograms of beef has been exported to the Republic of South Africa (RSA) in 2015 and 563 677 kg in the last six months. This year no beef has been exported to the European Union (EU) but the statistics indicate an increase of beef exported. 9 380 000 kg of beef was exported in 2014 opposed the 10 746 000 kg last year.
A total of 444 927 sheep were slaughtered at export abattoirs last year and 196 767 this year and 79 042 were slaughtered at local abattoirs last year while 37 922 have been slaughtered so far this year. A total of 205 077 sheep were exported RSA since the beginning of the year to date and 339 275 last year while 803 sheep were exported in 2014, 23 in 2015 and none this year the statistics show.
According to the statistics 6 923 001 kg of Mutton was exported in 2015 and 4 816 580 this year to date also 346 092 Kg of processed meat products of sheep had been exported and 226 604 kg this year to date.
A total of 21 045 goats have been exported in the last two years to Angola and a total of 419 500 have been exported to RSA since 2014 to date.
Regardless of the ongoing drought situation statics show an increase in the national head count of cattle compared to 2 634 418 recorded in 2013 2 770 545 of cattle heads were recorded last year.