PALAPYE: Jago Beef Abattoir, a wholly citizen owned company, is earmarked to officially open in July this year, its owner has revealed.
The P13.5 million abattoir was constructed over a period of 18 months and was jointly financed by Standard Chartered Bank and its owner, Bashi Gabampone. However, it has been operational since 2014 although not at full capacity, according to the owner.
Gabampone said that he had identified a niche in the beef market after benchmarking from the Botswana Meat Commission (BMC) and saw how some local slaughter laboratories compromised the health of consumers.
“Government wants to outsource some businesses to Batswana and we found the need to assist the Palapye community with an abattoir. We looked at how BMC is running and we did something similar to that,” he said.
Gabampone added that some local slaughterhouses handled meat unhygienically and bought meat from cattle rustlers.
Jago managing director, Badiredi Phampha said the abattoir was constructed to meet the demand and complement development projects in Palapye.
Phampha said the abattoir meets the standards of the European market, boasts of first class equipment and is expected to create job opportunities for many Batswana in the medium and long term period.
“This abattoir meets the standards of European markets. Animals slaughtered here are easily traceable and we do not complement quality and Department of Veterinary Services closely monitors us.
“We have employed about 41 Batswana in different positions who all are qualified in their respective positions. We have engaged and trained skinners from the local slaughter laboratories and as well recruited other skilled skinners from BMC,” he said.
According to Phampha, the abattoir slaughters about 25 beasts per day, but has the capacity to slaughter a maximum of 100 beasts daily at full capacity.
“We have already been approached by the Zambians and the Namibians to supply them with meat. Our vision is for government to allow us to supply SADC market because that will improve our economy, increase productivity and most importantly create more job openings for the benefit of our community,” he reiterated.
Phampha added that the abattoir was yet to construct the second phase of the project, which would deal with other by-products such as hides, horns and blood.