Meatco could lose overseas markets due to feedlot closure

22 Sep 2016 20:30pm
WINDHOEK, 22 SEP (NAMPA) – Meatco could lose clients due to a prolonged closure of its Okapuka feedlot, the company’s chief executive officer said.
Speaking at a media conference on Thursday to announce the closure of the feedlot, Vekuii Rukoro said the closure will challenge the company’s ability to fulfil the additional Norwegian quota for 2016.
“With already declining numbers due to the drought, the risk of losing lucrative clients overseas due to inconsistent supply and quality of meat is increasing,” he warned.
Earlier this month, the DVS closed the feedlot after Zeranol, a growth promoter in livestock, was detected in urine samples of two bulls taken in April this year.
The DVS stated that the feedlot is committing a violation and repeat infringement due to Zeranol being detected twice within a period of 12 months.
The restrictions on the feedlot will only be lifted when two consecutive negative results of the entire herd are obtained.
Meatco was granted an additional export quota of 400 tonnes for the Norwegian market to push the current allocation to that market to 1 600 tonnes.
“This is very important for us as a country to fulfil our awarded quota to show the competence and also for our future negotiations. Besides the importance of the Norwegian market, we also have obligations to serve our European Union clients, which is also a valuable market for us,” he added.
Rukoro noted that the company is currently purchasing cattle for the feedlot at an average of N.dollars 12.3 million per month. These purchases will have to be suspended and as the border remains closed for the export of weaners to South Africa, it is anticipated to have a material impact on the current weaner prices due to an oversupply with no other offtake.
The Okapuka feedlot intended to slaughter 32 000 animals during the 2016/17 financial year. However, this target has already been decreased by 7 000 animals due to the restriction of trade imposed by the DVS at the feedlot.
Export revenue loss in estimated sales is N.dollars 10.77 million per month for Namibia.