Didiza lifts ban on trade of livestock after foot-and-mouth outbreak
Cape Town - Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development Thoko Didiza has lifted the ban on the trade of livestock following the outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease last year.
Didiza told the media in Cape Town on Monday that the ban has been lifted after a meeting with her team at the weekend.
The department imposed the ban on the trade in December after an outbreak of the disease in Limpopo.
This led to eSwatini and Zimbabwe banning any import of meat from South Africa.
But Didiza said on Monday the country was now free to continue with its business.
Veterinarians from the State have been moving in and out of the farms since the outbreak to check on the animals affected and have been able to control the disease.
“There are preconditions for the resumption of auctions. Auctions will only be conducted under stringent conditions. All livestock agents must be registered with the Agricultural Produce Agents Council,” said Didiza.
The officials visited farms in Limpopo over the outbreak.
Didiza said this had to be done to ensure the disease needed to be contained and not spread throrghout the country.
“In our approach, we had to balance amongst a few variables, the risks and opportunity costs relating to the possible spread of the disease, economic losses to the entire country and financial losses to stakeholders,” said Didiza.