The Botswana Meat Commission (BMC) has announced some early Christmas cheer for cattle producers in the form of a general P2 per kilogramme increase in prices for cattle sold to its abattoirs.
BMC said last week that the changes are meant to increase production at its two abattoirs and are also due to the good prices being realised in the EU market.
There are four components of the changes that are meant to lure cattle producers to the BMC who have complained of low prices, resulting in Botswana struggling to meet the EU quota.
Hence, BMC decided to make a general price increase of P2 per kilogramme for all grades of cattle delivered.
"This P2/kg increase is over and above the export parity prices which will continue on the basis for cattle payments by the BMC," CEO Dr Motshudi Raborokgwe said in a statement.
The average weight of carcass delivered to the BMC over the last 12 months has been 201kg. This decision provides, on average, an extra P402 per head to cattle producers who deliver to the abattoir.
The BMC has also approved an increase in the export parity price for two-tooth cattle to the same level as the price paid for zero-tooth cattle. "This decision has been made to encourage greater competition for the two-tooth animals for both finishing on feed and for direct supply to
Production of carcases from young cattle with heavier carcass weight fits the need for demanding markets in Europe. "BMC will therefore like to encourage delivery of heavier young cattle that will best fit the market opportunities that currently exist," he said.
The BMC said it will also no longer penalise cattle for weights below 250kg and that all cattle over 200kg will receive the weight premium.
Previously, only zero- and two-tooth cattle had been receiving a weight premium for carcass weights over 250kgs while being penalised for weights below 200kgs.
This should result in price improvement for all cattle with three or more teeth of P0.90 CDM or an extra P180 per head delivered to the BMC.
The BMC will also extend to June instead of March the P2 per kilogramme premium paid to cattle that comply with EU requirements.
The announced changes will apply to cattle delivered from January 5 at both the Francistown and Lobatse abattoirs.
"BMC would like to encourage all cattle producers to benefit from opportunities that flow from these decisions and plan to take advantage of these price increases by delivering cattle to the BMC in 2009."