New Meatco CEO emphasises quantity, quality

26 February 2020 | Agriculture

New Meatco CEO Mushokobanji Mwilima has stressed that with the continued drought, the quantity and quality of livestock at abattoirs has to remain competitive, otherwise it will have a negative impact on Meatco and the economy.

Following his appointment effective 1 February, Mwilima told producers he strongly believes that collective sectoral leadership should always remain cardinal as no single institution can resolve issues of the 21st century by itself.

“A number of issues in the agricultural sector have changed globally, trends such as climate change, which has been harshly felt in Namibia and other parts of the world.”

According to Mwilima, climate change intensifies disease outbreaks that have negative implications on Meatco's ability to export and maximise market returns because they need to ensure that the company sustains its presence in niche markets such the European Union, Norway, the United Kingdom, China, the United States, Reunion and selected countries in Africa.

“Our deepest wish is to remain a key employer in the industry in order to employ active citizens in the agricultural sector.”

He said the drought has made it difficult for producers to meet their obligations and livelihoods, which are some of the inescapable challenges of the 21st century.

“However, I strongly believe that an industry that pulls in the same direction by providing better agricultural advisory services and beefing up dynamic capabilities as well as providing timely veterinary services would improve productivity. This would also ensure that the quantity of livestock which will, in turn, ensure institutions like Meatco remain competitive in consolidating the industry.”

Mwilima said that Meatco remains committed to playing their role by ensuring agriculture remains competitive, profitable and sustainable by focusing on areas such as rangeland management, which allows farmers to be more proactive in dealing with drought.

“Furthermore, Meatco urges government and other stakeholders to speed up the implementation of planned fodder production schemes and feedlot initiatives in regions with water resources so that the fodder produced in those regions can be shared across the country. This would make Meatco more resilient and help us to persevere regardless of drought.”

He said market diversification is critical and entering economies such as the US is exciting news for many stakeholders, as they ought to be happy being involved in such great economies to maximise returns.

“Meatco wholeheartedly understands farmers' losses, we understand the challenges and I want to assure you, as the producers, that we will continuously assist and address the farmers' needs at all times through working together.”

STAFF REPORTER

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