New SA Animal Export Conditions Favourable

THE revised animal export conditions by the South African government have been described as favourable.

Acting permanent secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry, Anna Shiweda said yesterday the revised conditions are ‘relatively favourable to our farmers.’

Two months ago, South Africa introduced stringent conditions for sheep, cattle and goats from Namibia, Botswana, Lesotho and Swaziland, which would have come into effect last week.

The conditions were so stringent that local farmers said meeting them would have put them out of business.

Farmers claimed that, if the new measures were implemented, expenses would be out of reach because the export requirements would have been very high.

The favourable revised conditions now say the livestock must originate from Foot and Mouth disease-free zone of Namibia and not within 5km of any farm under restrictions for Rift Valley fever and may not transit through a Rift Valley Fever infected zone during transportation.

Shiweda said the farm of origin must not be under any veterinary restrictions.

“All animals to be exported must be identified by means of a permanent mark (N)-a tattoo in the case of sheep and goats and hot-iron branded in the case of cattle,” she said.

Shiweda said owner specific ear tags are to be used in the case of sheep and goats. Cattle are required to bear individual identification by means of Namibia Animal Identification and Traceability Systems ear- tags and marked with owner specific hot-iron brand marks, Shiweda said.

“Exporters are also required to obtain a permit from the Register of Livestock Improvement of the South Africa except if the animals are intended for slaughter. Animals already certified for export under previous conditions may proceed to South Africa,” Shiweda said.

Government figures show that approximately 160 000 weaners, 90 000 sheep and 240 000 goats are exported to South Africa annually.

Source : The Namibian