THE country has a serious shortage of cattle, something which might see it failing to satisfy its markets abroad.
Managing Director of the Swaziland Meat Industry (SMI) Jonathan Williams said it was easy for farmers to say they would produce enough cattle than actually doing it.
He said the effect behind the challenge was that more cattle died each year compared to those that were born.
“As farmers, we need to work as a team to attend to this challenge as soon as we can. At the moment, we are working on having a single feedlot, but the challenge we are faced with is that we do not have enough land. In the future, we would like to have more farmers joining the scheme, but I believe that as years go by we will have more feedlots in the country,” he said.
Chairman of the Power Team Scheme Mandla Shongwe acknowledged Williams’ observation, saying they were happy that SMI was doing something to address the shortage of cattle.
He said SMI had bought them oxen valued at E12 500 each so that they could breed and produce more others.
He said the challenge they were faced with at the moment was that they did not have fenced farms thus the cows mixed with neighbours cows and produced calves yet that wasn’t supposed to happen.
“I plead with government to consider giving us a farm we can use as a feedlot and I would like to promise that it (government) would see good results as soon we allocated the farm.
Currently, we are working smoothly with SMI despite the fact that the business had a number of challenges,” he said.
The Minister of Agriculture Clement Dlamini advised farmers to forward a comprehensive business plan to his office failing which the ministry wouldnot be in a position to help them.