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Last Updated
Tuesday 03 August 2021, 12:07 pm.
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Drought leaves butcheries short of meat

SELEBI-PHIKWE: Shortage of beef here has led to skyrocketing prices for Botswana's most common source of protein and preferred relish.
By CALISTUS KOLANTSHO
Correspondent
(GMT +2)
Mmegi Online :: Drought leaves butcheries short of meat








The manager of Sandy's Butchery Factory, Garph Loser, blames the situation on drought that has hit cattleposts that supply this mining town with livestock for slaughter. Loser told Mmegi this week that pasture has withered and watering holes have dried up. He said the situation was so bad that factories like his were having to buy cattle from places like Palapye and Serowe over 130 kilometres and 300 kilometres away respectively, compelling them to raise prices to make up for the round trips of nearly 600 kilometres.

While Sandy's Butchery sold beef for P26 per kilogram before, it is currently selling the same amount of beef for P31.But for Queen Mabengano, who runs Daily Needs Supermarket, the culprit is the abattoir of Selebi-Phikwe Town Council and its incompetence. Instead of 60 beasts a day, the abattoir was instead slaughtering 40, which fell far below demand in Selebi-Phikwe and her two butcheries that need more than two beasts a day.

"Our quota is two beasts per day, which is not enough," she said. "When we complain to the local

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authority, we are informed that there is overcrowding at the abattoir."  Mabengano complained that the agreement between the council abattoir and meat businesses was that booking should be done when cattle are available for slaughter.

However, she alleged, businesses were making bookings even when there were no animals. Plainly dejected, Mabengano said Daily Needs was ratcheting up losses because it ran out of meat two weeks ago. They could even find themselves unable to meet their supply tenders from schools, she added.

Because they were not slaughtering their animals in Serowe, their prices had gone from P23 to P27 per kilogramme.Mabengano said feedlotters were another problem because instead of coming to the abattoir only to sell cattle, they were keeping the beasts there.

That notwithstanding, the principal public relations officer at Selebi-Phikwe Town Council, Ogomoditse Gaokgethelwe, says there is nothing wrong at the abattoir. She told Mmegi that shortage of meat in the mining town was the result of drought and nothing else.Regarding quotas for butcheries, she said they depended on size and capacity of the businesses.

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