Cattle ranchers want more freedom as live exports near P1bn

Original wealth: Cattle are hardwired into the Setswana concept of wealth PIC: MORERI SEJAKGOMO
Original wealth: Cattle are hardwired into the Setswana concept of wealth PIC: MORERI SEJAKGOMO

The country’s beef producers laughed all the way to the bank last year as the value of live cattle they exported reached close to a billion Pula. From years under the BMC-monopoly, the producers are enjoying greater freedom and they want even more, notes Staff Writer, MBONGENI MGUNI

The perennial tussle between cattle producers and the Botswana Meat Commission (BMC) revolves generally around the prices offered by the meat parastatal to farmers and the time the Commission takes to settle payments.

However, farmers over the years have been most frustrated by the monopoly the BMC enjoys in being the sole exporter of beef in the country. This monopoly has meant that the BMC is not just the single biggest buyer of cattle but dictates the prices and terms it extends to farmers. Farmers and the BMC have haggled for years over what “export parity pricing” means, the quality of stock delivered and the terms the parastatal has imposed on producers.

Editor's Comment
Mind your health

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