Livestock farmers in Chikwawa and Nsanje have complained that the unavailability of abattoirs in the area is a major challenge towards efforts to produce high quality meat and meat products that can fetch better prices on the market.
Speaking last Saturday at an agricultural field day held at Ngabu, Chikwawa, director of Khama Cattle Ranch, Medson Semba, noted that abattoirs play an important role in ensuring efficient and comprehensive consumer protection.
The field day—graced by director of livestock and animal health in the Ministry of Agriculture, Dr. Ben Chimera—was organised by a Chikwawa-based livestock corporative to provide interaction among livestock farmers and government officials with a view to promote the growth of meat production in Malawi.
Semba asked government to consider building abattoirs in the two districts to help farmers produce meat in line with hygiene and environmental rules and regulations.
“It’s undisputable that availability of meat and meat products in Malawi is greatly affected by how much Chikwawa and Nsanje farmers produce. However, lack of required resources keeps farmers from maximising economic benefits from their livestock,” he said.
The cooperative’s chairperson, Agrina Mussa, emphasised the need for farmers to be organised and sell their meat and products collectively for them to increase their bargaining power.
Chimera assured the farmers of government support to help them achieve their dreams and help the country access quality meat and meat products.
He also commended the farmers for stepping up efforts to increase livestock production in the country.
“I must, however, emphasise the need for farmers to always engage the ministry for their plans to materialise,” he said.