JOHANNESBURG – The Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development announced that livestock auctions in Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Gauteng and North West are suspended until further notice, after the outbreak of foot and mouth disease in the Molemole district of Limpopo.
TLU SA said they were shocked by the announcement.
Henk van de Graaf, the regional chairman of TLU SA North, said in a statement, "This is a tough blow to the livestock and game farmers in the country, who have already been brought to their knees by the disastrous drought. The selling of livestock was the only existing solution for farmers who don’t have feed for their animals anymore. Now, this avenue is also closed off."
TLU SA realises that serious action is needed to prevent the spread of the highly contagious disease, but is not convinced that the banning of auctions is the solution. The government should rather ensure the original preventative measures are strictly followed and implemented.
“The ban on auctions also holds serious consequences for the consumer, especially with the festive season around the corner,” says Mr van de Graaf. “Consumers should prepare themselves for a drastic increase in the price of meat and meat products. Meat will also become very scarce.”