An outbreak of foot and mouth disease in Limpopo began more than a week ago.
Mozambique authorities have banned the import of South African meat, following an outbreak of foot and mouth disease in Limpopo.

The National Veterinary Directorate decreed the ban on Thursday. A spokesperson said although the outbreak began on August 24, it was only notified on Wednesday.

The ban covers live cattle, pigs, goats and sheep, and meat and by-products. The import of livestock fodder is also banned. The ban does not cover pasteurised products (milk, cheese, yoghurt or cream). Also exempt are heat processed products (such as canned meats).

The directorate has ordered increased vigilance in the districts bordering South Africa, to prevent infected animals or meat from entering Mozambique.

The ban could have a serious impact on meat consumption in southern Mozambique, since its livestock producers cannot meet the demand.

Maputo, in particular, has long been dependent on South African imports.

Foot and mouth is a highly infectious viral disease which can affect all hoofed mammals, domestic and wild.

The disease is a major threat to livestock farmers and industries, and measures to contain outbreaks often include strict restrictions on movement and mass culling of animals.

Foreign Service