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Dire Prediction for SA Beef Exports After FMD Outbreak

14 January 2020

SOUTH AFRICA - SA could lose up to $140m (R2.02bn) in 2020 as countries in the region and elsewhere hold back on importing its beef due to a foot-and-mouth disease outbreak.

The disease, which was reported in 2019, remains a key challenge for SA with a ban of exports of animal products set to hit farmers hard amid worsening drought conditions.

According to the Agriculture Business Chamber (Agbiz), an organisation that represents commercial farmers and agribusiness, apart from the beef exports the foot-and-mouth disease outbreak of early 2019 has extended to sectors such as the wool industry.

The foot-and-mouth disease outbreak, which was reported in 2019, remains a key challenge for SA with a ban of exports of animal products set to hit farmers hard amid worsening drought conditions.

The agricultural sector is a crucial pillar of SA's economy with the country exporting roughly 49 percent of its agricultural products in value terms.

China, which imports on average 71 percent of SA’s wool, imposed a ban for months, which weighed on the industry. The wool sector’s exports are worth twice that of beef in value terms, averaging $308m over the past five years and all this was at risk during the ban.

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Source: Business Day

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