ZimTrade encourages goat exports
ZIMBABWE’S export promotion agency, ZimTrade, has urged farmers to increase goat production and target exports so as to increase earnings and revive the country’s economy.
Speaking during an export awareness seminar in Plumtree on Friday, ZimTrade associate trainer, Mr Dennis Choguya, said goat farming was an alternative considering that the country’s cattle herd was fast dwindling.
“Production and exportation of goat meat is one market that hasn’t been explored in the country yet it has great potential. Several countries are thriving from exporting goat meat. For example Ethiopia is making $97 million annually,” he said.
“Goat meat has markets in countries like Namibia, Angola, DRC and South Africa, among others. As farmers you should think about exploring this market. Produce goat meat at a larger scale and then export it.”
Mr Choguya said farmers had to form associations for goat farming in order to produce on a large scale to meet market demands. He, however, said farmers need to know particular breeds for market taste. just want the arrears cleared,” he said.
The expansion of Hwange Thermal Power Station’s generation capacity will add 600MW to the national power grid. The contract for the expansion of Hwange Thermal Power Station units 7 and 8 was awarded to Chinese firm Sino Hydro, which also landed the tender for 300MW Kariba Hydro South Power Station expansion.
The Government through the power utility, Zesa Holdings, is working on increasing domestic power generation to bridge the gap between power supply and demand with production at 1100MW against peak demand of 2 200MW.
Zimbabwe is importing over 300MW from South Africa’s Eskom and Hydro Cahora Basa of Mozambique, to ease its power deficit.
Several licences have also been issued to independent power producers to complement at least nine projects ZPC is working on, which will see Zimbabwe achieving excess capacity and exporting to the region from 2018 and beyond. — @pchitumba1
Mr Choguya also said farmers should buy feed, establish feedlots and have a health management plan to protect their herds from diseases. Farmers were also urged to control the mating process of their goats and embrace knowledge from other countries that were already exporting the same product.
“Goats are resistant to diseases and require little land compared to cattle and they adapt to unfavourable grazing areas. A single goat can give you several kids in a year yet a cow gives one calf in a year, which shows that goat production is a viable industry. In goat exporting countries communal farmers combine their produce so they can sell and breed in bulk,” he said.
ZimTrade regional manager, Mr Similo Nkala also said exportation of goat meat remained low hence the need to engage farmers.
He said the seminar sought to equip farmers with skills on how to rear goats for commercial purposes and the requirements of exporting. — @DubeMatutu
People attend a ZimTrade goat export awareness seminar in Plumtree on Friday
Mr Partson Mbiriri