Namibia’s pig farmers threatened by pork imports

19-07-2012 | | |

Namibia’s pork market threatens to be flooded with cheaper pork imports, principally from South Africa.

Namibia’s pig producers are claiming that pork is being sold at prices far below the production cost per kg for local producers, and that imported pork is squeezing locals out of the market.

The Pig Producers Association (PPA) requested a meeting with the Meat Board of Namibia to discuss the situation. Namibia’s Meat Board is made up of pig producers, processors and abattoirs.

The Meat Board, in a preliminary step to normalising the current situation, intend to start by collecting information from all the players regarding current stocks to map the way forward.

Measures and proposals
The Meat Board has also proposed that all importers of meat re-register with the Meat Board, which will ensure that they also buy local meat products. Failure to comply may lead to the introduction of protection measures.

Local pig producers intend to have at least 60 percent of locally produced pork on the Namibian market as soon as possible. Last year, only 23 to 25% of all pig products were locally sourced, while the rest was imported.

Namibia’s prospects
Namibia’s pig industry is currently in a phase of expansion and large investments have been made in pig farms as well as abattoirs over the past few years.

One such investment is the recently opened pig farm near Outjo in the Kunene Region, which is expected to boost the industry significantly.

The William Bosch Pig Farm will be one of the biggest and the most modern pig farms in southern Africa, according to industry pundits. The farm employs the latest available technologies, not even used on South African pig farms yet, they claim.

The William Bosch Pig Farm has also started building an abattoir that will cater for farmers, especially those in the Northern Communal Areas (NCAs). There are about 600 pig producers in the country, while more than 500 of them are small-scale producers.

Pig producers can be found all over the country, but mostly in areas where there are plantations such as maize from where pigs can be fed.

None of the pork produced in Namibia is exported.

Source: New Era