Maun abattoir asset to Botswana
20 Nov 2023
Botswana Meat Commission (BMC) Maun Abattoir remains strategic and critical asset to the country’s beef production sub-sector, including the agricultural economy in general.
Responding to a Parliamentary question, Minister of Entrepreneurship, Mr Karabo Gare said the performance of the BMC, Maun Abattoir between 2022 through to November 10, 2023 shows an improvement, both in throughput and turnover.
“At 14 992, the 2023 throughput reflects a 64 per cent increase on the 9 120, which was slaughtered in 2022,” Mr Gare said, adding that the increase in throughput was partly due to volumes from the Zone 6b depopulation project which contributed 7 000 of the almost 15 000 cattle slaughtered to date, a bulk of these volumes came in between March and July 2023.
He further said in terms of turnover, the BMC Maun Abattoir projected turnover for 2023 was P58.3m compared to P38.6m realised in 2022, representing over 50 per cent increase.
Moreover, he said non-commercial farmers held in excess of 80 per cent of the country’s national herd, adding that those animals were a major part of the household soci-economy.
“The operation of the Maun Abattoir together with those of the BMC as a whole are indeed important to the mandate of the ministry in so far as empowering Batswana and implementing the Economic Inclusion Act of 2021 are concerned,” he said.
He also reminded the House that BMC Maun product, given the classification of its cattle catchment/sourcing area of ‘Red Zone or FMD Free with Vaccination’ was only limited to be sold as boneless beef products, for now in Botswana, Mozambique, DRC, Zimbabwe (and previously in Kuwait) - as such faced limited demand by the referred markets.
Meanwhile, Mr Gare said there was no urgent need for the Plant’s capacity to be increased from the current 120 cattle per day, noting that with the capacity, the Plant could process 24 000 cattle per annum, which the Plant has never reached since the expansion, which was financed at a cost of P14m in 2016.
He said the best the plant utilisation averages 50-60 per cent and as such had excess capacity.
Mr Gare highlighted that due to heightened influx of slaughter at its Maun abattoir over a shorter period (between March and June) attributable to depopulation of Zone 6b, also coupled with over-production/supply of beef in the local market they experienced some challenges in liquidating stocks/inventories at the Maun abattoir.
He said efforts were underway to ensure that all outstanding payments were made on time.
He noted that BMC had managed to ensure that in terms of cattle prices, there was equity between those selling to Maun, and those selling non- EU cattle to Lobatse, such that all were paid the same rate at P31/Kg without any meat grading.
“In terms of the sustainable way forward, the BMC as a whole is currently engaging with commercial banks to explore the possibility of developing an instrument that could be used to finance the procurement of cattle from the Ngamiland area so as to align the turnaround time to what is achieved for Lobatse,” he said.
MP for Kgalagadi South, Mr Sam Brooks had asked the minister to inform the House on the operational performance of the BMC Maun abattoir between 2022 to date.
He further wanted to know if there were any other plans to increase the abattoir’s current capacity to meet the catchment area’s growing demand to market out their cattle through the facility.
This also include plans to ensure that payment-turnaround of farmers in the Ngamiland, align to Lobatse abattoir payment turnaround circles of ‘within 14 days of slaughter’, as part of driving desired operational performance and equity between Maun and Lobatse abattoirs. ENDS
Source : BOPA
Author : BOPA
Location : GABORONE
Event : Parliament
Date : 20 Nov 2023